Southern Regional Water Program

Research, Extension & Education Water Quality Programs through the Land Grant University System

Watershed Restoration

watershedrestoration.jpgEnvironmental restoration may be defined as the reestablishment of the general structure, function, and dynamic self-sustaining behavior of a disturbed ecosystem. Restoration efforts may be focused on rivers and streams, wetlands, forests, prairies, or combinations of valuable ecosystem habitats. The process may involve a wide variety of treatment measures to remove environmental stressors, reconstruct natural waterbodies, reintroduce native plants and animals, manage natural events such as fire, and prevent future harmful impacts.

The USDA and its associated land-grant universities are actively involved in research and education to support environmental restoration. Research and development of better methods for environmental restoration, as well as teaching and demonstrating the use of these technologies in both the classroom and field, are all basic strengths of the Land-Grant University system. The primary goal of extension/outreach education programs on pollution prevention is to reduce future environmental degradation.

Conditions in Your Watershed

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) maintains a website that inventories river corridor and wetland restoration projects in your state.

Resources and Programs

Some examples of major resources and programs provided by Land Grant Universities in the Southern Region are listed below. For more information on a specific state, click on the links here or use the drop-down menu at the bottom of this page to jump to environmental restoration in your state.

Extension Outreach

Each of the Land Grant Universities in the Southern Region includes an Extension program designed to provide educational outreach into all counties of the state. Extension education interprets research results from colleges and universities and other sources throughout the world and delivers it to the end user, who is often a homeowner, business owner or agricultural producer. Some examples of major Extension education programs addressing environmental restoration in the Southern Region include:

Scientific Research

Scientific research is the basis for development of new environmental restoration technology. Researchers at Land Grant Universities work to develop these new technologies and evaluate their benefits. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Current Research Information System (CRIS) provides access to reports on environmental restoration research supported by USDA and conducted at research centers or Land Grant Universities. Some examples of major research efforts in the Southern Region include:

Additional Resources and Programs

Many additional resources are available for your use in determining degradation levels, restoration needs, and to help you target potential problem areas for environmental restoration efforts.

College and University Education

Degree programs and continuing adult education are critical to develop new talent and human resources to address the water quality issues of the future. Educational curricula in environmental restoration are available at Land Grant Colleges and Universities throughout the Southern Region. Some key examples include:

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