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EPA’s Nine Key Elements in Watershed Planning

For more detailed descriptions of each element, download the South Carolina Simplified Guide to Developing Watershed-Based Plans. You may also want to review EPA’s Handbook for Developing Watershed Plans to Restore and Protect Our Waters.

Element A - Causes/Sources of Pollution Identified

Identification of pollutant sources and their causes.

Element B - Expected Load Reductions for Solutions Identified

Estimated load reductions from management measures identified in (c). (May also include overall pollutant reduction needed as found in a TMDL document.)

Element C - Nonpoint Source Management Measures Identified

Management measures (Best Management Practices, or BMPs) needed in order to eliminate or control pollutant(s).

Element D - Technical and Financial Assistance

Identification of funding and technical assistance needs as well as potential sources. Example: Watersheds with agricultural sources would most likely require the expertise of USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service staff and could potentially utilize Environmental Quality Incentive Program funds for implementation.

Element E - Education and Outreach

Outreach strategy that is targeted towards members of the public that are impacted by the project and the management measures from (c).

Element F - Implementation Schedule

Timeline of implementation events that proceeds in a logical and efficient manner.

Element G - Milestones Identified

List of milestones for keeping plan implementation progress on track.

Element H - Load Reduction Evaluation Criteria

Criteria to determine if pollutants are being reduced and progress is being made toward attaining water quality standards, or if plan requires revision.

Element I – Monitoring

Monitoring strategy to determine effectiveness of plan implementation.

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