Northampton County Conservation District
Celebrating 54 Years of Conservation 1961-2015
Northampton County, Pennsylvania

Updates, Announcements and Quick Links

Greystone Building at the Gracedale Complex, Nazareth, PA (Click photo for a Greystone Building history lesson )

Who we are

The Northampton County Conservation District is one of 66 Conservation Districts statewide and nearly 3000 nationwide dedicated to conserving soil and water resources (click for Conservation District History). The Conservation District is part of county government and also a sub-unit of state government.

Over 65 years ago Pennsylvania state legislators recognized the need to support grassroots local conservation efforts. As a result, the PA Conservation District Law was passed authorizing the creation of county conservation districts in every county, except Philadelphia. The Northampton County Conservation District was founded in 1961 when a group of farmers joined together to promote the use of conservation practices to protect soil and water resources in Northampton County.

Today, the Northampton County Conservation District's main goals are to promote soil conservation, maintain or improve water quality and promote environmental education. To achieve these goals, the Conservation District performs a variety of programs ranging from reviewing erosion and sediment pollution control plans for earth disturbance activities to providing advice on starting a local watershed association.

The Conservation District is led by a seven member Board of Directors. District Directors are volunteers that are nominated by an approved local organization and then appointed by Northampton County government. Their responsibilities range from policy creation to supporting efforts of district staff and their partner agencies to provide quality administrative, technical, and educational assistance to all county residents. Four members of the board are farmer directors, two are public directors and one is a representative of Northampton County Council.

Why soil conservation is important
Soil Conservation is a set of management strategies that are used to prevent soil from being eroded from the earth's surface or becoming chemically altered by overuse. Various strategies, or best management practices (BMPs), are used by excavation contractors, farmers and others to achieve this goal. So, what is the harm if a little mud washes into the stream? Excess sediments are associated with increased turbidity and reduced light penetration in the water column, as well as more long-term effects associated with habitat destruction and increased difficulty in filtering drinking water. By volume, sediment is the greatest pollutant to the surface waters of Pennsylvania.

Mission statement
To provide the public with a coordinated program of quality natural resource education and conservation within Northampton County.

The District serves a range of agricultural and urban interests and participates in a wide variety of resource programs. Please visit the links on the navigation bar to the left for a sampling of all we do.

Some examples of Best Management Practices around Northampton County


Conservation Practice (contour farming)
in Northampton County

A sediment basin with a skimmer, baffle, and emergency
spillway downslope of earth disturbance on a
residential development can minimize the impact of
construction stormwater entering our waterways



A concrete manure storage facility on a
Northampton County Farm prevents manure
runoff from entering our waterways


 Northampton County Conservation District
14 Gracedale Ave. - Greystone Building
Nazareth, PA  18064-9211
Phone: (610) 829-6276  Fax: (610) 746-1980
Office Hours: 8:00 - 4:00
Email: Contact Us