Saturated Buffers Batch and Build
This innovative project removes barriers to putting in water-cleaning structures at the edge of fields. It’s been so successful at speeding up implementation that it is now being replicated in counties and watersheds across Iowa.
The Batch and Build model was first implemented by Polk County Public Works in an effort to drastically scale up the number of saturated buffers and bioreactors in the county. Saturated buffers and bioreactors connect to tile lines at the edge of fields to remove nitrate before it enters local waterways. For years, only one or two were installed a year in the county. By streamlining the process, removing burdens for landowners and farmers, and providing additional funding, Polk County is scaling that up to more than 100 per year by 2023.
This model was an outcome of the Conservation Infrastructure initiative, co-led by IAWA and Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship. IAWA is helping to replicate the success in the North Raccoon and Cedar River watersheds.