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Agricultural Conservation Planning Framework (ACPF) Toolbox

Spatial data on soils, land use, and topography combined with knowledge of conservation effectiveness can be used to reduce nutrient discharge from small watersheds.

The Agricultural Conservation Planning Framework (ACPF) Toolbox software includes tools to process the LiDAR-based digital elevation models for hydrologic analysis, which then allows a series of prioritization, riparian classification, and conservation-practice placement tools to be used. These toolsets identify agricultural fields most prone to deliver runoff directly to streams, map and classify riparian zones to inform whole-watershed riparian corridor management, and estimate the extent of tile drainage in the watershed. The software maps out suites of locations appropriate to install each of several types of conservation practices. These practice-placement opportunities are mapped for practices including controlled drainage, grassed waterways, water and sediment control basins, and nutrient removal wetlands. Rather than making any recommendations, ACPF provides an inventory of watershed assessment data and conservation placement opportunities across a watershed, in order to inform local watershed planning.

ACPF software runs as an extension to ArcGIS software (ver 10.2 or higher) and requires the customized ACPF spatial databases that include agricultural field boundaries and land uses, key soil survey information, and LiDAR based elevation data that are all tied to the Hydrologic Unit Code (HUC) 12 watershed scale.

Release Date
U.S. Department of Agriculture -- Agricultural Research Service
Contact Name
Tomer, Mark D.
Contact Email
Public Access Level
Program Code
005:040 - Department of Agriculture - National Research
Bureau Code
005:18 - Agricultural Research Service