Precision Conservation

If we treat agricultural pollution with a scalpel instead of a hatchet, we might have a fighting chance of cutting the flow of fertilizers into rivers, lakes, and coastal waters.   –   John Carey (Conservation Magazine)

Precision conservation—projects at the right place, the right scale, the right size, the right time, and making sure they are working—is going to redefine how landscape conservation is approached. Instead of sweeping acquisitions or all-encompassing legislation, we can use the latest high-resolution datasets to conduct advanced geospatial analysis that allows us to better target and implement on-the-ground agricultural and conservation best management practices.

The Chesapeake Conservancy is actively developing these datasets and analysis tools to support the precision conservation movement. Using advanced flow accumulation algorithms developed by leading scientists, we are producing maps depicting concentrated surface flow at the parcel scale. When combined with high-resolution land cover datasets, these drainage maps can assist in identifying areas that have the greatest potential to reduce sediment and nutrient loads into adjacent water bodies.

Learn about the Conservancy’s work to implement Precision Conservation in the Susquehanna watershed

Read the Conservancy’s two reports on Precision Conservation:

The Emerging Role of
Technology in Precision
Implementing Technology
and Precision Conservation
in the Chesapeake Bay