Announcing the new Madera Chowchilla RCD

Resource Conservation Districts (RCDs) in California’s Central Valley are an asset for addressing the unique landscape-scale resource challenges of the region—including wildlife habitat, water scarcity, and agricultural viability—and there is a new (consolidated) RCD in town. The Chowchilla Red-Top RCD and the Madera RCD consolidated in February 2019 to become the Madera Chowchilla RCD.

After their last Municipal Service Review was completed, the two respective boards realized that they had the same conservation goals and shared the same area: the agricultural land of Madera County. Over time, the conversation naturally shifted to focus on how they could join forces and work together for greatest impact in their communities.

The consolidation took a little over a year and was made possible with generous funding from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, the California Department of Conservation, and the Central Valley Community Foundation.

The newly formed Madera Chowchilla RCD now covers almost all of the valley of Madera County at 552,135 acres. Their services include: public education and outreach on watershed principles and resource conservation and enhancement methods; practicing conservation of natural resources with cooperative landowners; and technical, scientific, legal, and professional advice to public agencies on social, cultural, and economic impact of land use on natural resources.

What are RCDs?

RCDs make conservation happen on-the-ground by partnering with local communities on a voluntary basis to care for California’s land, water, soil, and other natural resources.

Originally formed after the Dust Bowl in the 1930s, they were designed to evolve with the changing needs of people and the land, to help build vibrant and resilient communities, landscapes, and economies.

To ensure that every community has access to the critically important services that RCDs provide, the California Association of Resource Conservation Districts (CARCD) has been working with public and private partners throughout the state to identify opportunities for district improvement and transparency, including consolidation of districts when and where appropriate.

These efforts are part of CARCD’s Capacity Building Program, which is aimed at elevating and enhancing the statewide network of RCDs so that every district has the capacity to be a “Relevant, Excellent, and Visible” go-to hub for conservation in its community. Visit our Strengthening the RCD Network program page to learn more about our efforts.