Agricultural runoff is one of the bigger pollution problems plaguing the Chesapeake Bay. Because of that, hundreds of farmers across the region are working with public agencies and private groups to fence livestock out of farm streams or plant riparian “buffers” of trees and grasses along stream banks. These and other “best management practices” produce healthier farm streams and healthier farms as well.
The efforts are paying off; since the mid-1980s, farm-based runoff pollution in the Bay has been reduced by half. Clearly there is still a long way to go, but progress is undeniable.