The Adams County Conservation District (ACCD) celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2022. Conservation districts (districts) were initially established to promote the value of conserving soil and water to farmers. Today’s districts have evolved; their areas of interest and expertise involve almost every area of natural resource conservation imaginable. I wish to inform you of the “urban” Erosion and Sediment Control Program. This work relates to earth disturbance activities other than agricultural activities (plowing/tillage). Most of the “urban” work involves residential development but commercial, roads, utilities and timber harvesting are included. The urban team works closely with regulatory agencies, property owners, consultants, developers, contractors, municipalities, and many others.

Back in 1972, Pennsylvania adopted the Chapter 102 Regulations – Erosion and Sediment Control (E&S). These regulations were specific to all earth disturbance activities regardless of land use type. In 1981, ACCD agreed to administer the E&S program for voluntary compliance and encouraging voluntary conservation measures. In 1993, the district accepted the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program from the state. It was also in 1993 that ACCD hired its first full-time person to administer the duties of the E&S and the NPDES program. That person would deal with all E&S issues not involving agricultural activities. The district utilizes four staff members (two full-time and two part-time) who spend time on the “urban” side of E&S. Two senior staff have over 50 years of experience in the urban side of E&S.

Russell Ryan is the resource conservationist for the Adams County Conservation District.

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