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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.

Watersheds Assessments

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

About Watersheds Assessments

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 watersheds studies are available on the CEAP Frequently Asked Questions page.


Aerial view of a river running through agricultural land, with fields and trees.

Watersheds Publications

The CEAP Publications page includes reports and articles, fact sheets, webinar recordings, blogs, videos, and modeling documents detailing watersheds studies and associated findings.

Additional Resources

Lisa Duriancik

Watersheds Assessment Lead, Conservation Effects Assessment Project