ANRD’s Nonpoint Source Program oversees the development and revision of the 5-year Nonpoint Source Pollution Management Plan. The Plan was created in cooperation with the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s Public Policy Center and Crop, Soil, and Environment Science staff. Revisions of the 2018-2023 Plan are currently underway.
Why Fund Watershed Projects?
Watershed projects promote understanding of the full range of stressors in a watershed—physical, chemical, and biological—that may be affecting aquatic life and human health. When all significant sources and stressors are understood, the program and subsequent projects are better able to focus on those controls that are more likely to produce measurable improvements in ecosystem health.
Administratively, watershed projects are highly efficient. They encourage local and statewide cooperating entities to focus staff and financial resources on prioritized geographic locations and facilitate coordination of resources among interested parties. Also, they provide local agencies with an opportunity to take leadership roles in ecosystem protection. Individual watershed projects provide a statewide proving ground for innovative approaches as new models are developed and new watershed-level management approaches are tried.
Finally, watershed projects encourage local agencies and citizen groups to get involved either by participating in state or federal projects or by starting their own watershed projects. Projects create a sense of ownership within the project area and engender enthusiasm that will carry forward to new initiatives.
The elements of an effective watershed project are:
• Building a Project Team and Public Support:
Developing effective institutional arrangements and ownership of the project by stakeholders.
• Defining the Problem:
Developing an inventory of the watershed and its problems and conducting baseline monitoring.
• Setting Goals and Identifying Solutions:
Developing project goals, a list of management measures, and a detailed plan for their implementation.
• Implementing Controls:
Obtaining funding, securing commitments, and installing controls.
• Measuring Success and Making Adjustments:
Documenting success in meeting goals, monitoring, changing management measures as needed, and ensuring project continuity.
Related ANRD Programs That Address NPS Pollution:
Arkansas Unpaved Roads Program
Arkansas Nutrient Reduction Strategy
Wetland & Riparian Zones Tax Credit Program