The NRCS is encouraging the development of Rapid Watershed Assessments (RWAs) to increase the speed and efficiency generating information to guide conservation implementation, as well as the speed and efficiency of putting it into the hands of local decision makers.
Currently, RWAs are being developed to provide a natural resource snapshot and overview of each Iowa 8-digit Hydrologic Unit Code (HUC-8). The RWAs organize resource information into one document that local conservationists, units of government, and others can use to identify conservation opportunities and direct technical and financial resources to the appropriate sub basins. They provide a description of the sub basins' natural resources, resource concerns, conservation needs, and ability to resolve natural resource issues and concerns. RWAs typically contain the following information:
Land use and land cover
Water quality conditions report
Soil, stream, precipitation data
Census and social data
Progress/status of conservation by land use
Estimated future conservation practice application and associated costs
Over the course of five years, NRCS will be completing RWAs for the watersheds within Iowa's boundaries.
Iowa Completed and In-Progress RWAs
*Watersheds outlined in Black have completed Rapid Watershed Assessments.
**Watersheds outline in Red are Rapid Watershed Assessments in progress.