Non-Point Source Pollution Reduction

Non-point source (NPS) water pollution originates from multiple and/or diffuse sources. Reducing NPS pollution is a necessary step to improve water quality. Regulatory agency programs, such as New York State’s five-tiered approach to developing and implementing Agricultural Environmental Management (AEM) plans, target nutrients and sediments. NPS pollution regulation does not identify a perpetrator, and the programs to reduce NPS pollution may include elements of community-wide participation.  It is in contrast to “point source pollution” which is from a single source such as a farm yard or factory outfall pipe.  Examples of NPS pollution include agricultural runoff (from croplands, pastures, and barnyards), altered stream hydrology causing bank erosion, and atmospheric deposition (such as acid rain) originating from many individual point sources.

Capabilities: Administrative services

Implemented: Urban Best Management Practices


  • Agricultural Environmental Management (Onondaga County Soil and Water Conservation District (OCSWCD))
  • Groundwater Modeling (USGS)
  • Non-Point Source Characterization of Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Suspended Sediment in the Onondaga Lake Watershed (USGS)
  • Rural Non-Point Source Pollution Control (OCSWCD)
  • Urban Best Management Practices