The District's Purpose and Mission

The mission of the Anchorage Soil & Water Conservation District (ASWCD) is to help property owners protect their rights while developing, using, and conserving Alaska's natural resources. (Please see our page on Conservation vs. Preservation .) The District accomplishes its mission by providing technical, financial and education resources to property owners and undertaking projects that benefit property owners, the community and/or the natural resources of the area.

The ASWCD was formed by State Charter in 1997, one of 11 Districts in the State, plus the unorganized area of the state (over 330,000,000 acres) still under direct supervision of the Department of Natural Resources. It operates under Alaska Statute 41.10, the Alaska Soil and Water Conservation Law, and is a legal subdivision of the State Department of Natural Resources. The 11 Alaska Districts are overseen by the Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources, with recommendations coming from the Natural Resources Conservation and Development Board, a five-member Board appointed by the Governor to represent the five areas of the state.

Soil and Water Conservation Districts were created by the Alaska Territorial Legislature in 1947 to assist and represent the land owners and managers that provide from/with the natural resources of the state. This includes agriculture, forestry, mariculture, and all other forms of renewable natural resources.

Today, the ASWCD fills a need in the community - an agency run by five property owners that serves property owners and works to fix issues negatively affecting property owners and natural resources. We take on projects such as flood mitigation and control, roads and drainage, erosion control, and assisting with responsible development. The ASWCD is also responsible under the Alaska Right to Farm law and other Alaska Statutes, and provides technical assistance and support to all property owners regardless of whether certified 'producers'. We provide assistance with State and Local Code, Law, Regulation, and Policy issues, and provide technical support to the private sector and agencies.

All work with the ASWCD is held to strict confidentiality policies, including work with our contractors and associates (virtually all of ASWCD's services are provided through private sector contractors under contract with the ASWCD).