Since 1972, the Division of Conservation has been a participant in the National Cooperative Soil Survey Program. This program is a nationwide partnership of federal, regional, state and local agencies and institutions that work together to investigate, inventory, classify and interpret soils as well as publish, deliver and promote the use of soil information.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service is responsible for the leadership of the Soil Survey Program in Kentucky, with assistance provided by the Division of Conservation, the University of Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station and the U.S. Forest Service, which oversees federal holdings within the Daniel Boone National Forest.
Soil scientists from each of the cooperating agencies mapped, classified and interpreted soils data so that every county in the Commonwealth could have a published soil survey. The initial field work was completed in all of Kentucky's 120 counties in 1996, which made the Commonwealth one of the first ten states to complete this effort. Now, with the integration of geographic information sytems (GIS) and newer soil data, older published soil surveys, as well as new surveys, are available in an electronic format. This enables users of soil information such as farmers, conservationists, foresters, engineers, city-county governments and homebuyers to have a more valuable and useful planning tool to make better decisions.
For more information or for copies of published soil surveys, contact Mark Davis, Kentucky Division of Conservation, or Bill Craddock, USDA NRCS state soil scientist.