Deanna Osmond1, Donald W. Meals2, Dana Hoag3, Mazdak Arabi4, Al E. Luloff5, Greg Jennings6, Mark McFarland7, Jean Spooner6, Andrew Sharpley8 and Daniel Line6, (1)Soil Science, NC State Univ., Raleigh, NC (2)Tetra Tech, Inc., Fairfax, VA (3)Economics, Colorado State University, Ft. Collins, CO (4)Civil Engineering, Colorado State University, Ft. Collins, CO (5)Penn State, University Park, PA (6)North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC (7)Soil and Crop Sciences, Texas AgriLife Extension Service, College Station, TX (8)University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR
The Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) is an USDA initiative that involves the Agricultural Research Service, the National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA), and the Natural Resources Conservation Service. The overall goal of CEAP is to provide scientifically credible estimates of the environmental benefits obtained from USDA conservation programs. CEAP project types vary depending on the strengths and interests of the three different agencies. Specifically, 13 watersheds were selected to be part of the USDA-NIFA funded CEAP watershed studies. To become part of the protocol, these projects used retrospective water quality and land treatment data to analyze water quality changes relative to conservation practice adoption. Project data length varied from over 30 years to at least 5 years. Two projects, one in Ohio and one in Idaho were able to use long-term weather and water quality data to see changes in pollution delivery based on changing climate. In one case (Idaho), climate changes reduced pollutant delivery; in another (Ohio) it increased delivery.