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Ecological Science

Mission

The Ecological Sciences Division (ESD) leads the technology for Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in ecological, cultural resource, and environmental compliance technologies to ensure science-based conservation for our Nation's resources.

Functions

·Integrate agricultural, ecological, environmental, fish & wildlife, cultural heritage and energy concerns into all NRCS programs.

·Develop and implement new technologies to assess and treat soil, water, air, plant, animal, and energy resource concerns.

·Provide leadership and technology for erosion prediction and control, nutrient management and comprehensive nutrient management plans, pest management, forestry, fish and wildlife management, highly erodible land and wetland compliance, air quality, invasive species and pollinators, range and pasture management, water quality, soil quality, historical and cultural resources, and organic farming.

·Provide leadership for policy and maintenance of the Field Office Technical Guide (FOTG), National Conservation Practice Standards, and the National Technical Guide Committee.

·Develop policies and guidelines for NRCS compliance with laws, regulations, and Executive Orders pertaining to ESD expertise.

·Provide national technical liaisons for NRCS with other agencies and groups for ecological and cultural resources-related legislation, policy, and initiatives.

·Provide leadership for plant data information through the National Plant Data Center.

·Provide leadership for the National Plant Materials Program that selects, evaluates, increases, and releases plant materials and plant technology for conservation uses.

·Provide leadership and guidance for training and employee development in ecological and cultural resources activities.