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Map of the Districts circa 1977


     The East and West Kauai Soil and Water Conservation Districts (Kauai SWCDs) are two of sixteen conservation districts in Hawaii and 3,000 districts in the nation. 


     Hawaii’s Conservation Districts are self-governing sub-units of the State government, authorized by and operating under Chapter 180 of the Hawaii Revised Statutes. For administrative purposes, the Conservation Districts are placed under the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR). Each Conservation District is governed by an unpaid board of five directors: three elected by agricultural land owners and two appointed by the Board of Land and Natural Resources. Directors are assisted by Associate Directors. With funding from the State of Hawaii and the County of Kauai, Kauai’s SWCDs have paid staff consisting of two Conservation Specialists and a part-time District Assistant. Hawaii’s sixteen Conservation Districts have formed the Hawaii Association of Conservation Districts (HACD) to support and promote natural resource conservation statewide.


     The NRCS is the Conservation Districts’ prime conservation partner and technical resource agency. In addition to the NRCS, Conservation Districts work closely with and receive support from the DLNR, County of Kauai, Department of Water, State Legislature, County Council, US Environmental Protection Agency, HACD, UH College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, State Agriculture Department, Coastal Zone Management Program, and Garden Island Resource Conservation and Development (GIRC&D).

To learn more about the history of the Soil and Water Conservation Districts in Hawaii, see Imprint on the Land - 50 years of Conservation in Hawaii

OUR MISSION: take available technical, financial and education resources and coordinate them so they they meet the needs of the local land user for conservation of soil, water and related resources.


     The function of Conservation Districts is to use available technical, financial and educational resources to help local land users conserve soil, water, and related resources. In addition to the traditional mission of soil and water conservation, Kauai SWCDs are involved in a wide variety of related activities, including erosion control plan reviews of agricultural lands, reviewing and approving conservation plans in partnership with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), supporting farmers and ranchers in their effort to obtain government funding for installing conservation practices, involvement in the County’s Sediment & Erosion Control Ordinance, control of non-point source pollution, watershed planning, wildlife habitat preservation, and conservation education and outreach.


  • Receive technical assistance at no cost.

  • Optimize the use of natural resources on your property and decrease soil erosion

  • Improve water use efficiency and minimize the environmental impact of farming

  • Become familiar with government regulations and receive guidance on how to prevent violations

  • Comply with lease requirements for other agencies

  • Qualify for county Grading, Grubbing & Stockpiling permit exemptions

See our Conservation Planning page for more information or contact us.

To read more about what we do, see our Annual Report.

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