Forestry Service is responsible for restoring, managing, and protecting their state’s forests to sustain its natural resources. This role includes supporting private forest landowners through technical assistance to manage sustainable forests. Service foresters can be found at the local level, often servicing a county or city. The service forester can assist landowners in developing a forest stewardship plan, a planting plan, and follow-up on implemented practices. State forestry departments often work with federal partners like USFS, NRCS and FSA to deliver best management practices on rural lands, including riparian forest buffers.
The Department of Agriculture promotes agriculture in their respective states and works with farmers and soil conservation districts to plan and implement conservation practices. Agriculture is a major economic driver in the Chesapeake region. At the same time, the watershed is looking to the agriculture sector to provide three-quarters of the total nutrient reductions expected of Bay states by 2025.
The Department of Environment enforces environmental policies and regulations. In 2010, the Chesapeake Total Maximum Daily Load, or TMDL, started being enforced. A TMDL is a regulatory term in the U.S. Clean Water Act, describing a value of the maximum amount of a pollutant that a body of water can receive while still meeting water quality standards. The practices necessary to meet the Chesapeake TMDL goals of reduced nutrients and suspended sediment must be in place by the year 2025.
The Department of Natural Resources acts to preserve, protect, restore, and enhance our environment for this and future generations, because the health of our society and our economy are dependent on the health of our environment.