Oregon’s Agricultural Water Quality Management Program
What is a Strategic Implementation Area?
A Strategic Implementation Area, or “SIA,” is a geographic area of focus selected by the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA), in coordination with local partners, with the intent of providing targeted outreach and assistance for landowners to implement projects that improve water quality in the local watershed, while helping landowners adhere to state regulations.
SWCDs assist willing agricultural landowners within designated SIAs to design and implement voluntary projects that improve on-farm practices and achieve immediate water quality benefits.
A Brief History
The Agricultural Water Quality Management Act, Senate Bill 1010, was passed in 1993 by the Oregon Legislature, directing ODA to develop plans, rules, and regulations, intended to prevent and minimize pollution of water caused by agricultural activities.
Since 1997, ODA has worked with Local Advisory Committees, which include farmers, ranchers, stakeholders, and local agencies, to develop Agricultural Water Quality Management Area Plans, which give landowners a framework for regulatory compliance, while promoting water quality and continued conservation efforts.
The Inland Rogue Agricultural Water Quality Management Area includes the majority of Jackson and Josephine Counties, as well as portions of Curry, Klamath, and Douglas Counties.
Read more information about SIAs from ODA.
See the Inland Rogue Agricultural Water Quality Management Area Plan and simplified Factsheet.
Every few years, new SIAs are identified by ODA following discussions with partners, including SWCDs and watershed councils, and a background review of local information and existing water quality data. Areas that would benefit most from the targeted outreach, education, financial and technical assistance provided by local partners and agencies are selected.
Partner agencies and organizations provide tremendous support to SWCDs in the form of technical assistance and financial resources. These partners and agencies include ODA, Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB), USDA Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), watershed councils, and other local entities, all committed to improving water quality for present and future generations.
Developing and implementing your own plan can help reduce pollution of streams, lakes, and ponds; improve surface and groundwater quality; stimulate growth of native vegetation along streams; and help stabilize streambanks. Additionally, your plan may help you improve the production potential of your property; decrease unwanted invasive plants; improve livestock health and vigor; improve pasture quality; decrease muddy areas; and decrease labor time and costs, along with other benefits.
For an in-depth look at JSWCD’s involvement with SIAs, follow the page links below for information on our current Applegate River SIA, as well as success stories and photos from completed projects in Wagner Creek SIA & Neil Creek SIA!