The SWCD’s of Oregon were created gradually starting in 1939. To date, there are 45 districts serving Oregon. They are considered subdivisions of state government, but function as local units led by a locally-elected board of directors. District Directors are elected on Oregon’s general election ballot and serve terms of four years without pay. Directors are members of business, professional and agricultural communities who understand the ecological relationships of soil, water, plant, and animals.
Columbia SWCD is a special district that offers FREE services to the local residents and landowners in Columbia County. Our focus is to help you with land and water issues you may have on your property or simply help you prevent potential issues. We do this through free technical assistance and sometimes cost-share may be available for certain practices.
Agricultural Water Quality Management Act
In 1993 the Oregon Legislature tasked the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) with reducing water pollution from agricultural sources.
The Columbia SWCD assists the ODA with addressing agricultural runoff by working on a voluntary basis with landowners and agricultural operators to address pollution from:
¨ Erosion and runoff associated with roadsides and urban development
¨ Contaminated runoff from agricultural operations
¨ Reducing sediment from eroding agricultural and forest lands and stream banks
The Act does not specify how to comply with runoff and soil erosion. It gives each area and landowner the authority to develop Best Management Practices to suit their needs, and the needs of their operations.
Columbia SWCD prefers to be Pro-Active rather than Reactive helping landowners implement best management practices to prevent agriculture and water quality issues on their land
The Columbia SWCD is non-regulatory, and works with willing landowners to prevent problems and solve issues that arise from a variety of land use practices.