The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service NRCS (one of our Source Water Collaborative (SWC) members) has just posted their new bulletin for the “National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI) Watershed and Source Water Protection Area (SWPA) Selection and Criteria for Planning and Implementation Phases of NWQI for FY 2023.” Water utilities, state drinking water programs, and other partners are encouraged to reach out to your NRCS State Conservationist’s Office to discuss implementation and begin planning now for potential changes in the NWQI watersheds and SWPAs that are due by September 30. The NRCS prioritizes funding for landowner agricultural practices in these areas to protect water quality and quantity, including drinking water sources.
This bulletin provides criteria and action items for the NRCS State Technical Committees to work with partners to:
- Request new watersheds for the FY 2023 planning and implementation phases of NWQI.
- Request to withdraw current NWQI watersheds.
- Request new NWQI SWPAs for both ground and surface public water supplies for planning or implementation phase.
For more information about this NWQI opportunity, read the bulletin here. For additional information about:
- NRCS state selected high priority source water protection areas, visit the NRCS Source Water Protection website.
- How to work with state conservationists, download the SWC’s Agricultural Toolkit and Watch the June 2021 SWC Webinar on Opportunities For Engagement With NRCS To Identify New NWQI Watersheds.