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A river running through agricultural land, with a field on the left, field with wooded mountain on the right, and cloudy blue skies above.

Watershed Assessments

Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) watershed studies provide in-depth assessments of water quality, water availability, and soil concerns at a finer scale than national or regional assessments. 

About CEAP Watershed Assessments

Map of the United States with locations of Conservation Effects Assessment Project watersheds assessments identified.

Water quality concerns related to agriculture affect private landowners, governments, and communities. Through CEAP, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) works with agricultural producers and partners including other agencies, universities, conservation districts, and watershed groups to quantify the effects of voluntary conservation on factors such as water quality, water availability, and soil health in select small watersheds across the nation.

There are currently 24 active watershed studies. Findings from these studies strengthen the science base for voluntary conservation, improve conservation planning, refine methods and tools, and ultimately help USDA deliver more focused, strategic conservation opportunities to support productive agricultural lands and environmental benefits nationwide. Additional details on watershed studies are available on the CEAP Frequently Asked Questions page.

CEAP Watershed Publications and Relevant Tools

Reports, Articles, and Bibliographies
Fact Sheets: Science Notes
Webinars, Blogs, and Videos
Phosphorus Modeling Documents

CEAP Watershed Highlights

The below highlights represent recent resources and key findings released by CEAP on watershed-scale conservation efforts and outcomes. Visit this webpage frequently to see what's new, or browse the above publications to access hundreds of published resources from CEAP watershed assessments.

Additional Resources

Lisa Duriancik

Watershed Lead, Conservation Effects Assessment Project