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Research Project: FY 2018 Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP)-Benchmark Watershed Assessment Studies (on croplands)-Oxford (WQ&ERU)

Location: Water Quality and Ecology Research

Project Number: 6060-13660-008-19-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Jul 1, 2018
End Date: Sep 30, 2019

Objective:
Principal focus of the CEAP Watershed Studies is to evaluate the effects and benefits of conservation practices at the watershed scale, in support of policy decisions and program implementation. The overall goals of the CEAP are to: • Estimate conservation effects and benefits at regional and national scales; and • Develop scientific understanding of conservation practice effects at watershed scales. The goals of the CEAP Watershed Assessment Studies Components are: • Quantify the measurable effects of conservation practices at the watershed scale; • Enhance understanding of conservation effects in the biophysical setting of a watershed; and • Inform local watershed conservation strategies.

Approach:
The effects of conservation activities on water and soil quality will be assessed at the watershed scale using models such as ARS' Soil and Water Assessment Tool, in combination with ARS long-term watershed data sets, expertise, and resources. Problems to be addressed through this agreement include the following four areas: 1.1 New and innovative modeling and assessment tools to quantify sediment and contaminant transport on the landscape. 1.2 Understanding how to select, place, and combine conservation practices to achieve improvements in water quantity and quality in watersheds. 1.3 Improving conservation technologies to better protect water resources: Development and testing of new designs, equipment, and materials. 1.4 Ensuring conservation and agricultural management practices can increase agricultural profitability and resilience under changing climate and land use.