The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) provides conservation planning and technical assistance to clients (individual farmers/ranchers, groups, and units of government). These clients coordinate with NRCS to develop and implement conservation plans to protect, conserve, and enhance natural resources (soil, water, air, plants, and animals).
Conservation planning is a nine step process that is broken down into three phases. During the nine step process the natural resource concern (problem) is identified, resolved, and maintained through a conservation plan. The process integrates ecological (natural resource), economic, and social considerations to meet private and public needs. This approach, which emphasizes identifying desired future conditions, improves natural resource management, minimizes conflict, and addresses problems and opportunities. Mutual goals by the client and NRCS are achieved in a successful conservation plan.
The success of conservation planning and implementation depends upon the voluntary participation of clients. The planning process used by NRCS is based on the premise that clients will make and implement sound decisions if they understand their resources, natural resource problems and opportunities, and the effects of their decisions. Short term and long term goals are discussed and considered prior to the development of a conservation plan, making the plan a valuable guide to addressing resource concerns.
Conservation planning helps clients, conservationists, and others view the environment as a living system of which humans are an integral part. It enables clients and conservation planners to analyze and work with complex natural processes in definable and measurable terms.
The NRCS objective in conservation planning is the sound use and management of soil, water, air, plant, and animal resources to prevent their degradation and ensure their sustained use and productivity while also considering related human social and economic needs. This truly lends itself to the NRCS motto of Helping People Help The Land.
Last Modified: 03/03/2011