The watershed is basically the area surrounding a natural body of water and is a major connection between the human world and the local ecosystems. Because of industrialization and other human activites, perserving watersheds and managing their health is essential. For example, after a large rainfall, a river may rise and flood their watershed, which shouldn't be a problem. However, if a parking is too near to the watershed or in the watershed, then toxic chemicals, engine fluid, or oil may be washed into the river itself. Watershed management is the practice of analyzing, protecting, developing and managing the land, vegetation, and water resources within a single drainage basin-watershed-for the conservation of all its resources and for the benefit of both humans and the ecosystem.
Elkhart River Restoration Association is one of many organizations in the United States that takes managing watersheds to task. By cleaning up any human waste in the area, managing companies built too close to the river, preventing access erosion, and taking care to perserve the ecosystem as it stands, the ERRA works to keep the rivers in Elkhart as naturally clean as possible.