The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and Ohio Department of Agriculture, along with local entities, will develop Watershed Implementation Plans or Nonpoint Source Implementation Strategic Plans (NPS-IS Plans) in priority watersheds not already covered by a plan.

The State of Ohio; including the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency-Division of Surface Water; the Ohio Department of Agriculture-Division of Soil and Water Conservation, and the Ohio Lake Erie Commission will work in a coordinated fashion to:

  • Promote Watershed Action Planning in priority watersheds.

Ohio’s 9-Element — Nonpoint Source Implementation Strategy (9 Element NPS-IS) written at the 12-Digit Hydrologic Unit Code (HUC 12) scale is a required eligibility item for Federal Clean Water Act project funding assistance(e.g., §319 and GLRI).  The 9-Element NPS-IS is also the appropriate tool for aiding with funding-prioritization efforts that are so important for project implementation.  And moreover, it is the planning tool the State of Ohio is using to formulate locally led strategies that increase stakeholder participation that result in increased implementation of conservation practices to the degree that is needed in the Western Lake Erie Basin.

  • The State of Ohio will also support local entities—including city and county governmental departments and agencies; including  Soil and Water Conservation Districts; conservancies, and watershed support organizations in their efforts to develop, improve and/or update 9-Element NPS-IS plans. The state will:
    • Support watershed coordinator training efforts;
    • Provide plan development and improvement training opportunities to planning groups and/or local stakeholders;
    • Provide and update planning guidance and seek out funding opportunities for 9-Element NPS-IS plan development and plan updates; and
    • Continue to make available a website that provides access to 9-Element NPS-IS guidance materials and a listing of State-approved 9-Element NPS-IS plans.

This map shows the status of 9-Element NPS-IS plans in HUC 12s throughout Ohio’s Lake Erie watershed as of June 3, 2019. Plans developed for “far field” impairments specifically address Annex 4 nutrient reduction goals. “Near field” plans focus on localized impairments and are not (currently) written to achieve load reduction targets to address Lake Erie goals; however, projects in them may address nutrients that are exported downstream to Lake Erie. “9-Element Equivalent” plans are those which were part of Watershed Action Plans developed in cooperation with State of Indiana partners according to U.S. EPA §319 program protocol.