Runoff Control for Livestock Facilities


Stream: Producer



Who should apply?

Livestock producers with yards who require upgrades to prevent the entry of rainfall, or who plan to improve manure and runoff management. (Refer to ‘What is runoff treatment and why is it important for my project?)

To apply you must have completed

  • A verified, 4th Edition Environmental Farm Plan
  • An approved Nutrient Management Strategy dated within the last five years must be provided for covered yard projects (i.e., an impermeable base and a roof in a single project)

Have you completed an Environmental Farm Plan?

Having a verified, 4th Edition Environmental Farm Plan is required to apply for all Environmental Stewardship Project Categories. If you haven’t completed one, sign up here.

The project being applied for must be identified as an action in the EFP, and effectively move a “1” or “2” rating to “3” or “4” (best) rating

Eligible activities and expenditures

  • Upstream diversion of surface water around existing outdoor livestock yards to divert clean water from entering the livestock yard, including:
    • Surface water diversions
    • Berms
    • Surface inlet or catch basin
    • Roof for existing manure storages
    • Eavestroughs on existing livestock buildings that are adjacent to the livestock yard
  • Improvements to existing impermeable surfaces and construction of, or improvements to concrete curb walls with a maximum height of 0.6 metres above grade on existing outdoor livestock yards to direct runoff to storage or treatment areas
  • Silage or solid manure leachate collection, transfer, and storage or treatment systems, such as a vegetative filter strip system or constructed wetlands (treatment systems must be designed by a professional engineer)
  • Concrete storage for runoff
  • Tile observation and shut-off stations
  • Removal or plugging of tile drains within 15 metres of livestock facilities
  • Construction of a covered livestock yard on an existing, outdoor livestock yard. Eligible covered yards must include:
    • An impermeable concrete base
    • Concrete curb walls with a maximum height of 0.6m
    • A roof (for runoff management)
  • In-kind contributions

Ineligible activities and expenditures

  • Activities and expenditures as detailed here
  • Runoff control for buildings or sites built since April 1, 2018
  • Runoff control on outdoor sites, where livestock are confined inside
  • Eavestroughs not associated with reducing or controlling runoff from existing outdoor livestock yards, or manure storages (e.g., pig or poultry barns with contained storage where runoff is not likely to enter the storage)
  • Electrical components that may be part of a roofed livestock yard
  • Costs associated with feed bunks, water bowls, walls, bedding mats, penning, stalls, curtain walls or other components that may be part of a covered livestock yard
  • Construction of an impermeable base without a roof or without runoff treatment for contaminated runoff management)
  • Construction of a roof without an impermeable base
  • Construction of a new covered livestock yard (in an area established since April 1, 2018)

Available cost-share

30 per cent, up to a maximum of $20,000

Required documentation

  • A certificate of completion for a 4th Edition Environmental Farm Plan
  • Pictures of current livestock yard showing runoff issues, including features such as wells, water courses, etc. in the nearby area
  • An approved Nutrient Management Strategy dated within the last five years, is required for all covered yard project applications (i.e., an impermeable base and a roof in a single project)

Merit assessment criteria

  • Degree of risk reduction estimated to be achieved through project
  • Proximity of livestock yard to watercourse or other water sensitive feature such as a roadside ditch (i.e., runoff immediately leaves the property)
  • Preference will be given to projects within the Lake Erie or Lake St. Clair watersheds
  • Number of times an applicant business has accessed cost-share funding under the producer stream of the province-wide Partnership program
  • Ability of project to support economic recovery and growth of Ontario’s agriculture and agri-food sectors

Other useful information:

An additional 5 per cent in cost-share funding may available to successful producers who provide information on the Systems Approach section of the application to demonstrate that the project will be complemented or enhanced by the continued maintenance of three previously implemented Best Management Practices (BMPs). For more information, click here.

What's Next?

Is this project for you? Find out if you meet the program requirements
Program Requirements


For more information, visit ontariosoilcrop.org

Any established farm business that is a legal entity and produces agricultural commodities in Ontario under a valid Farm Business Registration Number (FBRN), or an allowable exemption, is eligible to apply for cost-share funding under the Partnership—provided that the farm business meets all of the requirements set out in the Program Guide. You must also have a valid and up-to-date Premises Identification (PID) Number for the farm property where the project is to take place. In addition, you are required to be in compliance with all Requirements of the Law and remain in compliance for the duration of the project.

A farm business may have up to two (2) applications approved in an intake or under consideration at one time. A separate application must be submitted for each project.

There is no limit to the number of cost-share projects that a farm business can complete over the five-year span of the Partnership. There is also no limit to the number of approved cost-share projects that a farm business can have underway at one time.

Applications are evaluated based only on the information submitted and will not be considered if they do not meet eligibility criteria or if they are incomplete.

Complete applications that meet eligibility criteria are assessed using Merit Assessment Criteria, which is specific to each Project Category. Applications that are selected using a merit-based review process are approved on a continuous basis while funds remain available.

Conditional approval for funding may be granted for complete applications with high merit that require confirmation of additional information before project approval.

Applications are submitted electronically.* You can apply and submit all required documentation at ontarioprograms.net.

You can also complete the Application Form for the Project Category you are applying under, and submit with all required documentation by email to CAP@ontariosoilcrop.org. Copies of Application Forms are available at ontarioprogramguides.net.

*If you cannot apply online or by email, you may send hard copy applications and all required documentation to OSCIA by post or courier to 1-367 Woodlawn Road W, Guelph, ON, N1H 7K9.

Applications will be reviewed, and cost-share funding decisions will be made after the Application Intake has closed. You will be notified by mail and/or email approximately 45 business days from the date a given Application Intake closes. (If there is an exception to this, it may be noted in the Project Category Description.) There are three possible outcomes:

  • Application is approved – you will receive confirmation of claim procedures and submission deadlines, and a questionnaire that must be completed at the end of the project.
  • Application is conditionally approved – you will be notified about what additional information is required to finalize approval of your project.
  • Application is declined – you will receive a brief explanation for the decision.

The start date for your project is the date on the Approval or Conditional Approval Letter issued by OSCIA for each successful project. Projects cannot be started before that date. Eligible costs can only be incurred, invoiced and paid for by the applicant after the date on which the Letter is issued.

The completion date for your project will be specified in the Approval Letter issued by OSCIA for the successful project. Eligible costs must be incurred, invoiced and paid for by the applicant on or before this completion date.

New producers are new entrants to the agricultural production industry who:

  • File personal income taxes in Ontario
  • Have proof of ownership or control of productive agricultural assets to generate farm income
  • Have a valid and up-to-date Premises Identification Number for the farm property where the proposed project is to take place
  • Have not had more than $7,000 in gross farm income two and three years prior to enrolling in the Partnership
  • Have business projections that demonstrate potential annual gross business income of $7,000 or more within three years of applying

New producers are eligible for:

  • Financial Analysis
  • Business Plans
  • Marketing Plans
  • Nutrient Management and Soil Health Planning
  • Education, Training, Assessment and Planning (Animal Health)
  • Food Safety and Traceability Gap Assessment and Pre-audit
  • Food Safety and Traceability Training
  • Education, Training, Assessment and Planning (Plant Health)

If you are a new producer, contact OSCIA at 1-800-265-9751 or CAP@ontariosoilcrop.org for a list of applicable Project Categories, and to request a copy of the New Producer Application Form.


Here are some other programs you might be interested in:


Edit date: December 6, 2021

Need Help?

For assistance with the Online Program Guide, please contact the Agricultural Information Contact Centre – Mon. to Fri., 8 am – 5 pm, 1-877-424-1300 or ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca

What is runoff treatment and why is it important for my project?

If your runoff control for livestock facilities project consists only of an impermeable base, (with no roof) rainwater will still be able to enter the yard, turning this clean rainwater into contaminated water (runoff) as it mixes with manure.

Any project application seeking cost-share funding for an impermeable base for a livestock area must also include an appropriate method of managing potentially contaminated water/runoff or include a roof that will cover the entire area to prevent clean rainwater from entering this area.

Options for managing contaminated runoff may include: a diversion of the water to an existing liquid manure storage facility on the farm (with adequate capacity to handle the increased volume), a dedicated runoff holding tank, designed for this purpose or a permanently vegetated area (PVA) with a flow path that meets the requirements of the Nutrient Management Act and Ontario Regulation 267/03, as amended. The options for managing runoff including PVA are explained in the OMAFRA factsheet “managing outdoor confinement areas and livestock yards” and “handling runoff from solid agricultural source material storages and outside livestock areas