Watershed planning and management comprise an approach to protecting water quality and quantity that focuses on the whole watershed. This approach is necessary due to the nature of polluted runoff, which in most watersheds is the biggest contributor to water pollution. Polluted runoff is a caused by a variety of land use activities including development, transportation and agriculture, and may originate anywhere in the watershed.
Watershed planning and management involves a number of activities including:
- targeting priority problems in the watershed;
- promoting a high level of involvement by interested and affected parties;
- developing solutions to problems through the use of the expertise and authority of multiple agencies and organizations;
- measuring success through monitoring and other data gathering.
The goal of watershed management is to plan and work toward an environmentally and economically healthy watershed that benefits all who have a stake in it.
Nebraska's Community Based Approach to the Watershed Management Planning Process is a process in which local people lead the watershed planning based on locally identified needs. Local people determine the watershed resource issues and then carry out a planning process that will help achieve the desired resource conditions. This planning process integrates social, economic and ecological concerns that could impact the management plan. Agencies, programs and others provide the technical and financial resources to help solve those needs and implement solutions.
For more information on the Community Based Watershed Management Planning Process contact:
- Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality
- Heartland Regional Water Coordination Initiative for citizen involvement in watershed management
- The Center for Watershed Protection and the Conservation, Technology and Information Center at Purdue University for additional resources.
Information presented within the watershed section of this Water Web site has been reviewed by University of Nebraska - Lincoln Watershed Management Team members Steve Tonn, Thomas Franti, Charlie Wortmann and David Shelton.