From the director
In 1999, the Neuse Education Team demonstrated
science-based solutions throughout the Neuse River Basin, targeting
farmers, urban dwellers and homeowners with their "working toward
solutions" water quality message. Whether it was initiating the
successful Neuse Crop Management Project, organizing alternative
pavement demonstrations, or leading tours for elected officials
- this team remained committed to educating everyone as to their
role in improving water quality in the Neuse River.
The Neuse team reached more people than
ever last year with their education message - despite Hurricane
Floyd - and team members continue to identify new resources to
help solve environmental problems. Since its inception, the team
has brought more than $10 million in grant monies to the Neuse
River Basin. Not only does this money enhance their educational
efforts, but it also widens the possibilities for science-based
solutions. Once again, the Neuse Team had a successful year. The
comprehensive nature of their water quality education program
continues to serve as a model for other river basins in states
other than North Carolina. Water quality scientists and professionals
from across the Southeastern United States were very impressed
with the Neuse Team's program, which was highlighted at a regional
water quality conference held in Raleigh last Spring. But even
with all their success, there still remain many challenges.
We must all continue nurturing relationships
with county and city governments, other state agencies, policy
makers, agricultural groups and water quality professionals. As
you read through the Neuse Team's 1999 Annual Report, remember
that each of these projects will have long-term impacts - the
kind of impacts that the children of citizens in the Neuse and
other river basins will benefit from in the years that follow.
Director of North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service
hope that through the more efficient use of nutrients and herbicides
we can save money and improve the Neuse."
Jim Parrot, Neuse River Basin Farmer and Neuse crop Management cooperator
Neuse Crop Management Project
Launched in early 1999, The Neuse Crop Management
Project seeks to balance water quality improvements with economic viability.
It augments the Neuse Education Team's work on the four demonstration
farms funded by the Clean Water Management Trust Fund -one straddles
the Wake/Franklin county line, and the others are in Wayne, Lenoir and
Craven counties. The project is focused on producing results at the
Other 1999 Neuse Team Agricultural
- Project funds from the Pew Charitable Trust Foundation and the United
States Environmental Protection Agency funded technicians who work
on these farms and who will be working with local farmers.
- Nutrient management planning has begun on many of the farms.
- Controlled drainage sites were installed at the Lenoir County and
Wayne County farms. These mark the first. of a series of BMPs to be
implemented in conjunction with the Neuse Crop Management Project.
- Some of the farmers involved in the project used Herbicide Application
Decision Support System (HADSS) - a weed management tool - to better
target their herbicide program.
- The Neuse Team held several meetings throughout the Neuse River
Basin explaining to farmers, agribusiness, landowners and the turf
industry their responsibilities under the newly adopted Neuse Rules.
The team reached more than 4000 persons.
- Developed and distributed 3 fact sheets explaining the Neuse rules,
reaching 1200 people.
- Established a pilot nutrient management training program, developed
crop yield data and refined computer accountability tools.
- Worked with the state Division of Water Quality, and other state
agencies, to refine nutrient management programs.
- Held animal waste trainings for more than 700 producers.
- Installed a constructed wetland demonstration site at a Johnston
County nursery. (Testing has shown a 50% reduction in nitrate-nitrogen
in water leaving the wetland thus far.)