Planning for Water: Statewide Approaches to Watershed Planning and Management
The Clean Water Act (CWA) Amendments of 1987 and subsequent programs of the Environmental Protection Agency have led to a greater emphasis on controlling nonpoint source pollution. Many states have responded with creative programs to implement watershed management strategies. This paper examines the watershed management approaches of North Carolina, Massachusetts, and Oregon. Each of these states represents a distinct response to the policy directive of the CWA and other federal legislation. Through the use of formalized coordination mechanisms, open planning processes, and creative implementation strategies, states can use watershed planning and management to resolve complex water resources issues through a holistic and integrated approach to environmental management. Although evaluation
of these programs in achieving long term water quality and habitat enhancements cannot yet be
conducted, initial evidence suggests that coordination across jurisdictions and agencies and
cooperation among various stakeholders are essential elements of successful watershed planning and management program design.