"The Voice of Conservation in Mississippi"
What is MACD?
The Mississippi Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. (MACD),
established in 1945, is a non-profit, non-governmental organization
composed of the 82 Soil & Water Conservation Districts in Mississippi.
MACD is governed by a thirty-one member Board of Directors and represents
more than four hundred district commissioners throughout Mississippi.
What is a Soil and water Conservation District?
During the 1930's, as Americans were recovering from the Great
Depression, along came an unparalleled ecological disaster of national
consequence. Americans looked out their windows to a black fog of
dust, slowly moving across the entire United States. Following one
of the most severe droughts in history across the Great Plains,
the region's soil began to erode and blow away creating great clouds
of dust, some of which began to settle in Washington, and came to
the attention of President Franklin Dl Roosevelt.
Through a Presidential mandate, Congress subsequently passed legislation
declaring soil and water conservation a national policy and priority.
Congress realized, since about 75% of the land in the continental
United States was privately owned, that the only guarantee for the
success of a conservation program was to garner voluntary support
from the landowners.
In 1937, President Roosevelt wrote the governors of all states
recommending legislation that would allow local landowners to form
soil conservation districts.
The Mississippi Legislature, in 1938, officially recognized that
our soil resources were deteriorating at an enormous rate and that
this was being caused by misuse or improper use of the land and
the lack of applied conservation treatment or measures. It further
recognized that if this were allowed to continue, the results would
In its effort to solve the program, which was primarily soil erosion,
the Mississippi legislature enacted the Soil Conservation Law (currently
the Soil and Water Conservation Law), in which the State Soil Conservation
Committee (currently the Mississippi Soil and Water Conservation
Commission) was created. Provisions were made so that each county
could organize a soil and water conservation district.
A Soil & Water Conservation District's governing board is comprised
of voluntary citizens who come together and represent land owners
and users in their district and ensure a local voice in conservation.
MACD Vision Statement
Today, there is a Soil & Water Conservation District in every
county in Mississippi. Among other things, these Districts' ongoing
and future efforts are to:
- Implement farm conservation practices to keep soil in the fields
and out of waterways.
- Conserve and restore wetlands and wildlife habitat.
- Protect groundwater resources
- Plant trees and other land cover to hold topsoil, purify the
air, provide cover for wildlife, and beautify neighborhoods and
- Help developers and homeowners manage the land and water in
an environmentally sensitive manner.
- Reach out to communities and schools to teach the value of natural
resources and encourage conservation in generations to come.