Watershed Enhancement Areas
The Watershed Conservation Analysis selected the top 20% high-quality watersheds in the Pennsylvania region in terms of high water quality and ecological value. The Watershed Restoration Analysis set apart the 20% lowest-quality watersheds in the region. This portion of the study, "Watershed Enhancement Areas," addresses the remaining 60% of watersheds in Pennsylvania. These watersheds reflect conditions that are likely not pristine, and are prime candidates for restoration action because they are not as severely degraded as the Restoration watersheds. The restoration of these Watershed Enhancement Areas will likely yield the most significant ecological gains for the amount of effort and conservation dollars spent.
It is important to note that these Enhancement watersheds, like any of the other watersheds discussed in this report, may be degraded at different levels of severity for a variety of reasons. The watersheds listed as part of this Enhancement category should be used only to guide conservation efforts; on-the-ground site visits and knowledge of specific streams and watersheds will be needed to verify conditions that have been described here. The most common water quality problems in Pennsylvania are discussed in Chapter 11 of the ACC User's Manual.
For more information about these Watershed Enhancement Areas and the data used to select them, see Chapter 12 of the ACC User's Manual.