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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Viewpoint: Opportunities and Challenges Associated with Watershed-Scale Assessments of Soil and Water Quality


Submitted to: Journal of Soil and Water Conservation
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: June 15, 1999
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: Developing land management strategies that result in improved soil and water quality will require new research approaches and measurement techniques. This report summarizes an invited collection of manuscripts that discuss the use of simulation modeling, ecological monitoring measurements, techniques for summarizing and reporting large-scale soil and water quality data, and the importance and value of long-term field research data. Success and limitations of the U.S. EPA's Rapid Bioassessment Protocols (RBP), Ohio's Invertebrate Community Index (ICI), the Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI), a Land Quality Index (LQI), and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Visual Stream Assessment (VSA), Stream Habitat Assessment (SHA), and Riparian Vegetation Index (RVI) are examined. The value of long-term soil, plant, and nutrient management information, geologic data, and hydrologic records is discussed and used to examine water use efficiencies and nutrient use efficiencies. The goal for this special collection of papers is to provide readers with a better appreciation for the complexity associated with unraveling the intricate relationships between soil and water quality at the watershed scale.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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