Other Federal Agencies
Databases and Tools
The term watershed
refers to the geographic boundaries of a particular waterbody, its
ecosystem and the land that drains to it. A watershed also includes
groundwater aquifers that discharge to and receive discharge from
streams, wetlands, ponds, and lakes. Large watersheds are sometimes
referred to as river basins.
Watersheds come in all
shapes and sizes. They cross county, state, and national boundaries.
No matter where you are, you're in a watershed! You and everyone in
your watershed are part of the watershed community. The animals,
birds, and fish are too. You influence what happens in your
watershed, good or bad, by how you treat the natural resources, the
soil, water, air, plants, and animals. What happens in your small
watershed also affects the larger watershed downstream.
protection/restoration is accomplished through efforts at various
levels including EPA, state agencies, local agencies and private
organizations. In most cases watersheds do not conform to political
boundaries and therefore effective solutions require cooperative
Many communities across the country struggle to find the right approaches, tools and data to include in their watershed plans. EPA recently posted a new Web site called "Watershed Central, a "one-stop" tool, to help watershed organizations and others find key resources to protect their local watershed.
For more information.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The Corps is divided into eight regional divisions. Each division is further divided in to subordinate districts. Division and district boundaries, for the most part, are determined by watersheds. The districts are the operational level of the Corps, seeing to the day-to-day activities in all of the mission areas.
of Interior Bureau of Land Management (BLM). To ensure
the best balance of uses and resource protections for America's
public lands, the BLM undertakes extensive land use planning through
a collaborative approach with local, State and Tribal governments.
Maximum Daily Load Resource Locator (TMDL). For each
pollutant that causes a water body to fail to meet water quality
standards, the state must conduct a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL)
study. A TMDL study identifies point and non-point sources of each
pollutant that fails to meet water quality standards. Use this tool
to find out more about the TMDL program in your state and to identify
and locate impaired waters in your state.
Local Offices. The USGS manages water information at
offices located throughout the United States. Although all offices
are tied together through a Nation-wide computer network, each
collects data and conducts studies in a particular area.
Water Resources Reports.
Databases and Tools
Academy. The Watershed Academy is a focal point in
EPA's Office of Water for providing training and information on
implementing watershed approaches.
EPA is administering Clean Water Act (CWA) grant programs in ways that encourage watershed protection. Under section 319, State, Territories, and Indian Tribes receive grant money which support a wide variety of activities including technical assistance, financial assistance, education, training, technology transfer, demonstration projects, and monitoring to assess the success of specific nonpoint source implementation projects.