Nonpoint source pollution has been identified by the N.C. Division of Water Quality as the primary source of degradation of freshwater rivers and streams in North Carolina. The approach taken in North Carolina for addressing agriculture's contribution to the nonpoint source water pollution problem, is to primarily encourage voluntary participation by the agricultural community.

Financial incentives are provided through North Carolina's Agriculture Cost Share Program. It has been applauded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and has received wide support from the general public as well as the state's agricultural community. Participating farmers receive 75% of predetermined average costs of installed best management practices (BMPs) with the remaining 25% paid by farmers directly or through in-kind contributions. View a list of Best Management Practices. Some applicants may be eligible to receive as much as $75,000 per year.

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