Identifying and Protecting Healthy Watersheds: Concepts, Assessments, and Management Approaches

How Cadmus supported EPA’s Healthy Watersheds Initiative

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched the Healthy Watersheds Initiative to:

  • Protect and maintain watersheds with natural, intact aquatic ecosystems.
  • Prevent them from becoming impaired.
  • Accelerate restoration successes.

As part of Cadmus’ support to the Initiative, we provided extensive research and writing in support of the development of EPA’s Identifying and Protecting Healthy Watersheds technical document, which provides an assessment methodology, tools, and information necessary to identify, evaluate, protect, and manage undisturbed aquatic ecosystems that may be vulnerable to human impacts. Furthermore, Cadmus created design, layout, and figures for the final document.

During the development of the technical document, Cadmus performed a screening-level assessment of watershed health for Vermont. Since that time, Cadmus has been providing EPA with support in the conceptualization of an integrated assessment approach for the identification of healthy watersheds at statewide and watershed-specific scales.

Cadmus also provided EPA with planning and facilitation support for a scientific workshop on Healthy Watersheds Integrated Assessments. For three days, Cadmus facilitated discussion between staff from local, state, regional, and federal programs, as well as expert scientists to advance the state-of-the-science on integrated healthy watershed assessments.  Outcomes from the workshop helped to inform the finalization of the technical document.

As a companion to the technical document, Cadmus also provided support to EPA on the development of the content, coding, and formatting of EPA’s Healthy Watersheds Initiative website, which allows EPA to disseminate new and updated information relating to the technical report.

Identifying and Protecting Healthy Watersheds serves as one of EPA’s primary tools for informing local stakeholders of methods for protecting healthy watersheds. The technical document is available to view or download on EPA’s website.