The Natural Resources Conservation Service in Tennessee is now accepting applications from landowners for more than $2.1 million to protect, restore, and enhance wetlands on their property.

NRCS-TN manages the Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP), a voluntary wetlands restoration program providing technical and financial support to participating landowners.

Applications must be submitted no later than May 1, 2007, to be ranked.

“Tennessee's wetlands are important because they support diverse populations of fish, wildlife and plants,” said State Conservationist Kevin Brown.

“They also protect our water quality by filtering out pollutants and providing natural flood control by storing and absorbing excess water. It is vital to Tennessee's environment to restore, protect, and preserve our wetlands.”

Information about WRP is available at local NRCS offices or conservation districts in each county, and at the NRCS Web site at http://www.tn.nrcs.usda.gov.