About the Nature Smart Climate Readiness Program

Not Accepting Applications
Not Accepting Applications

The Nature Smart Climate Readiness Program (NSCRP, or Nature Smart) helps support nature-based solutions to store and capture carbon, mitigate the impacts of climate change, improve water quality, and contribute to biodiversity on farms.

Applicants participate in a competitive reverse auction to conserve or restore grasslands, wetlands, and riparian buffer zones to non-agricultural production uses. Applicants must identify the total costs for the proposed project(s) and a cost-share funding request (or “bid”) in their application.

Successful applicants will have demonstrated the most potential for environmental benefits through carbon sequestration, greenhouse gas emission reduction, and other co-benefits such as preservation of habitat for Species at Risk.

Applicants to the Nature Smart program must:

  • Own the farmland on which they would like to complete the project
  • Approved applicants must sign a 10-year Conservation Agreement with the Ontario Soil & Crop Improvement Association (OSCIA) before funding can be released. Eligible costs can be incurred retroactively to April 1, 2023.

What do you need to apply?


Carefully read the information in the Nature Smart Program Guide as only eligible and complete applications will be considered. The Program Guide provides information on eligible activities and costs, available cost-share, guidance for establishing a bid, required application documentation, and provides a link to the application form.


Applications to Nature Smart are submitted via email to naturesmart@ontariosoilcrop.org. PDF application forms are available in the Program Guide  during the intake.


The following must be included with an application submission:

  • Application Form
  • Farm Business Registration Number (FBRN) or eligible exemption
  • Site map
  • A letter of support, and/or planning documents, and/or similar documentation from a qualified third-party (see Documentation Required With the Application in the program guide  for detailed requirements)

Conservation Agreements

Nature Smart aims to provide long-term carbon sequestration through the use of Conservation Agreements. Before the cost-share funding payment can be issued, approved Nature Smart applicants are required to sign a Conservation Agreement with OSCIA.

In the Agreement to support eligible projects, participants commit to implement and maintain the approved project for ten (10) years. It is encouraged, but not required, that the agreement be on title for the land where the project is implemented. Approved applicants must notify OSCIA of all land ownership or control changes.

OSCIA may verify practice implementation including conducting inspections throughout the duration of the Conservation Agreement. If the practice is not maintained as outlined in the approved application and signed Conservation Agreement, applicants will be required to repay all funding received for the approved project.

For more information on Conservation Agreements, contact us at naturesmart@ontariosoilcrop.org.

Resources For Applying

The Program Guide provides information on eligibility criteria, available cost-share, limits of cost-share funding and more; carefully read the guide before applying.




For information on the Nature Smart Climate Solutions Program, click the link below.





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Do you have questions about the Nature Smart Climate Readiness Program?

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Interested in exploring other cost-share opportunities?

Funding Statement

This project is being undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada through the federal Department of Environment and Climate Change. The Nature Smart Climate Solutions Fund recognizes that conserving and restoring nature is fundamental to mitigating and adapting to climate change. Canada is committed to nature-based solutions to build resilience and help Canada meet its 2030 and 2050 climate change objectives. OSCIA is pleased to be supporting these national objectives through delivery of the Nature Smart Climate Readiness Program.

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