With the ACPF you can leverage the power of geo-spatial data to make strategic field-scale conservation decisions

The Agricultural Conservation Planning Framework (ACPF) is a free ArcGIS toolbox that leverages high-resolution geo-spatial data to help local farming communities better address their soil and water conservation needs.



The National Hub for the Agricultural Conservation Planning Framework is focused on serving NRCS offices and supporting partners across the US to implement the use of ACPF in conservation planning processes on multiple scales. The National Hub is composed of several partners including: The Conservation Professional Training Program, Iowa Water Center, Iowa State University, Minnesota Water Resources Center, North Central Region Water Network, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension.


The ACPF National Hub is pleased to announce the release of ACPF Version 6 and the ManureMap Toolbox!

We are excited to announce that Version 6 of the ACPF is now available along with an updated ACPF Core Database! ACPF Version 6 no longer requires the use of TauDEM, and the updated Core Database includes:

  • Field boundaries for 32 new Michigan watersheds
  • 21 new watersheds that surround previously available watersheds
  • Updated field boundaries for 744 Iowa watersheds to 2021 data
  • Removal of 172 watersheds that had less than 10 field boundaries
  • A new Pour Points tool in place of the Peuker-Douglas Floe Model Tool

Also – The USDA ARS, in collaboration with the USDA Long-Term Agroecosystem Research (LTAR) network and the ACPF National Hub, has recently developed the ManureMap Toolbox! The ManureMap toolbox is an ACPF-compatible tool that provides a method to spatially characterize the application of manure nutrients from their point of production to proximal cropland in agricultural landscapes. The tools are designed to utilize field boundaries and land use information derived from the ACPF. Tool outputs include an identification of fields likely to receive manure based on crop nutrient need and spatial proximity to the point of manure production, as well as an estimate of the land base required and haul distances associated with each operation.

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The ACPF is being used in hundreds of watersheds in states across the Corn Belt to inform and engage local producers in agricultural conservation.

ACPF input data is available for much of the Midwest and the database is constantly growing. Currently, ACPF data is available for Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin and parts of Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and South Dakota. Plus, with ACPF Version 3, users are able to build soils and land use databases where not available! Find out if ACPF input data is available for your watershed.

Curious for more examples of where ACPF is being used? Explore the ACPF use map displaying watersheds that have reported using ACPF.


Photo courtesy of USDA NRCS


Facilitates targeted conservation

The ACPF identifies and addresses high-risk areas enabling conservation efficiency and effectiveness.

Supports watershed planning

The ACPF identifies high-risk areas and determines solutions that can serve as the foundation for watershed plans. The output maps generated through ACPF show the watershed as a whole, simplifying area-wide planning.

Saves time and resources

The ACPF takes the guesswork out of talking to producers and installing conservation practices and streamlines conservation planning.

Enables local-level flexibility

The ACPF is non-prescriptive, allowing landowners and local stakeholders to choose the option that is right for their land, their community, and their watershed.

Promotes stakeholder engagement

The ACPF facilitates conversation between diverse stakeholders with different perspectives, issues and priorities. The ACPF output maps can be used in conversations with producers, drainage authorities, county supervisors, and program managers, to name a few.

Provides scientific validity to conservation funding opportunities

The ACPF output maps help conservation professionals scientifically justify recommendations and proposals to producers and funders. With ACPF, grant applicants can prioritize and develop potential projects for funding based on outputs.