Dept. of Conservation – Watershed Program Study (DOC)

In July 2016, the California Department of Conservation (DOC) contracted the Sierra Institute to conduct a retroactive study of the CalFed Watershed Program and the DOC Watershed Coordinator Program. The Watershed Program launched in 2000 as one of eleven elements in the CalFed Bay-Delta Program to address Bay-Delta’s water quality crisis. Through 2008, the Watershed Program funded 175 projects in local watersheds, supporting activities such as capacity building, watershed assessment and planning, education and outreach, implementation, monitoring, and research. Congruent to the Watershed Program, the DOC Watershed Coordinator Grant Program (WCGP) began in 2000 and awarded approximately 150 grants that supported watershed coordinator positions to advance coordinated and collaborative watershed management activities at local and regional levels. The WCGP ceased operations in 2014.

This study evaluates the CalFed Watershed Program and the WCGP to identify what worked, and what did not, and assess effectiveness of community-based approaches in watershed management. Through conducting in-depth case studies, including a total of 30 project grants and 30 watershed coordinator grants, the Sierra Institute synthesized lessons learned and compiled recommendations for project leaders, watershed coordinators, and state agencies to aid in the adoption of best practices among local entities and program managers and inform future watershed management strategies. The final report is available below, as well as individual case study reports.

Download the final report here:

Final Report

Individual Case Studies (Downloads coming soon!)