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nerain_logoThe Nebraska Rainfall Assessment and Information Network (NeRAIN) collects rainfall information all across Nebraska. Click logo to see rain reports.

The network needs volunteers to collect and report rainfall amounts. To participate, e-mail NeRAIN Coordinator Tyler Sanders or call him at (308) 254-2377.

Many SPNRD projects and programs are made possible thanks to Nebraska Environmental Trust grants. To learn more about NET's comittment to Nebraska's natural resources, click here.

The South Platte NRD Board of Directors is a group of locally elected officials managing area natural resources on your behalf. The board meets the second Tuesday of each month and welcomes your input.

The next scheduled board meeting is:
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
5:00 p.m. at the SPNRD Conference Room, 551 Parkland Dr., Sidney.
Click here to see board agendas and minutes.


 Western Water Use Managment (WWUM) Modeling Information

barrier_cdTo see solutions to tree girdling in
conservation tree rows see our video:


Integrated Management Plan
“Second Increment Planning”

The Nebraska Department of Natural Resources, NeDNR, and South Platte NRD along with District Stakeholders are working on the Second Increment Planning of the Integrated Management Plan.  Below is the NeDNR website page.  Under the “Second Increment Planning” heading are the 4 dates of the stakeholder advisory committee meetings.  Please direct any questions you may have to the SPNRD.


(Joint East Sidney Watershed Authority)

Construction for the Joint East Sidney Watershed Authority Project has completed.           

The City of Sidney and the South Platte Natural Resources District (SPNRD) partnered in this effort to manage/reduce flooding and provide water quality benefits. 

The East side of Sidney has a natural flood-path that brings water down from the I-80 interstate.  While water does drain across some agriculture ground it also drains across commercial and residential developments.  This runoff can contain high concentrations of sediment, phosphorus, nitrogen, oil, grease and other pollutants.  Water then runs through populated areas and can cause dangerous conditions and property damage.  The improvements being developed will redirect much of that water back to the Lodgepole Creek while also providing a filtration of the runoff water. 

Vegetated bioswales (canals) and bioretention (ponds) will slow water while removing sediment, reducing soil erosion and filtering pollutants as it drains.  A fully functioning bioswale can remove up to 20%-40% of pollutants and sediment from runoff. 

Please direct your questions to the City of Sidney offices and the SPNRD office. 


Public Notices

The meetings of the various boards, committees and advisory groups performing their functions on behalf of the South Platte Natural Resources District are meetings where business is discussed in open session, except where provided by state law. The District Board of Directors encourages members of the public to attend such meetings and provide input as to the management of natural resources in the southern Panhandle.

To see meeting notices, click here.


Water Modeling Software Available

Adaptive Resources, Inc. has created modeling software [Western Water Use Management Model] that can show hypothetical estimates of what water levels may do over a period of time. Using information on what trends have been in the past could assist water users with determining the best management practices for water consumption in the future.


Water Modeling Software Available

Adaptive Resources, Inc. has created modeling software [SPNRD Monitor Well WebApp]



Conservation Trees Available

Beginning October 2017 the South Platte Natural Resources District is ready to receive orders for Conservation Trees.

Conservation trees and shrubs are a great way to buffer noise and provide privacy and beauty to the landscape.  Every year the Natural Resources Districts from across the State of Nebraska help to plant nearly a million trees.  Over four million trees have been planted in the South Platte NRD since 1977.

Several varieties of bareroot trees are available.  The Colorado Blue Spruce and Ponderosa Pine along with Black Walnut and Cottonwood are just some of the Conifers and Deciduous trees available for purchase again this year.  Shrub choices include Chokecherry and Lilac along with several others.  Each of the bareroot Conifers, Deciduous, and Shrubs are $1.00 each with a minimum order of 10 per species.

Hefty Root Plus, previously called Regular Potted Trees, will be available at $2.25 each, minimum order of 10 per species and Hefty Root, previously called Small Potted Trees will be available at $1.50 each, minimum 10 per species.

If unsure what trees or shrubs would be the most effective in the space available or what each tree or shrub looks like, visit  The website has pictures of available species with descriptions of the average height and suggested spacing between trees and rows for effective planting.  There are even charts that tell if the tree or shrub is native to one of four zones in Nebraska and whether it is suggested to plant in each zone.  Conservation Trees for Nebraska books are available for free at the District offices during normal business hours.

The South Platte NRD and NRCS offices provide assistance with tree and shrub planting plans and have a list of contractors who have been certified in the handling and planting of trees and shrubs.  There is also information about cost share opportunities and other services available on this website by clicking Conservation Trees or by stopping by the District offices at 551 Parkland Dr. in Sidney.

For a 2019 tree order form, click here. (PDF file)
For your convenience, you can type your order on the form, then print and mail it, or save it and email it to


2018 District Conservation Award Winners Honored

On Tuesday, November 13th, 2018 the South Platte Natural Resources District (SPNRD), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) Extension will host an Awards Ceremony for the 2018 Conservation Award Winners.  This year 4 area award winners will be recognized; the Conservation Farm Award, Grassland Management Award, the Tree Planter/Caretaker Award and the Community Environmental Impact Award.  The winners of these awards make a difference in our District.  Their outstanding efforts set them apart from their peers and their management practices create a sustainable and long lasting environmental benefit.  The criteria met for these producers is not based solely on the cost-share received on their operation, but on their enthusiasm and commitment to creating a better place for everyone.  Each year we gather to celebrate their efforts and recognize their hard work.  We are pleased to announce the 2018 District Conservation Award Winners!


2018 Conservation Farm Award

Walt Narjes

Like so many agriculture operations in this area the Narjes operation is a family affair. The love, pride and appreciation Walt has for his business is evident to anyone who knows him. People who spend a lifetime in this career know that farming and ranching isn't what you do, it's who you are.

Walt has dedicated his mind and heart to preserving the resources that support him. Over the years he has spent time and money investing in land improvements. Walt has worked with multiple agencies and experts to enhance the cropland and rangeland he owns and manages. His dedication has created a progressive operation that is constantly changing and adapting.

The SPNRD is proud to recognize the Narjes operation as the 2018 Conservation Farm of the Year.

2018 Grassland Management Award

The Mohr Family

The Mohr ranch isn't a one-man operation. Gene Mohr attributes much of his success to his family. Gene's loved ones worked side by side with him over the years to get multiple projects done.

Gene and Chari are full-time teachers, but as anyone in Ag knows, that doesn't mean they are part-time ranchers. All operations require time to maintain efficiency. The Mohr's have put in that time. They have worked with conservation offices to maximize range useage while also enhancing wildlife habitat.

Please join us in recognizing The Mohr Family as the 2018 Grassland Manager of the Year.


2018 Tree Planter/Caretaker Award

Robert "Bob" Larkin

With over 30 years under his belt planting trees you could say Bob Larkin has a bit of experience in the benefit of living windbreaks.

Maintaining treerows can be just as labor intensive and time consuming as the initial planting. Healthy tree rows take care and maintenance to become strong assets to any operation.

Functional tree rows require maintenance and occasional tree replanting to last in the long-term operation. In addition to planting the original rows Bob invests in replacement trees to keep his windbreaks full, functional and beautiful.

Trees provide a tool for the landowner while also providing land conservation benefits and wildlife habitat. Bobs contributions enhance the environment and his commitment earns him the title of 2018 Tree Planter/Caretaker Award winner.

2018 Community Environmental Impact Award

Sullivan Hills Camp, Nebraska Lutheran Outdoor Ministries

The Community Environmental Impact Award celebrates those who have worked towards benefiting others. The Sullivan Hills Camp run by the Nebraska Lutheran Outdoor Ministries has a beautiful property full of enhancements. The camp also offers events and education to people, young and old, that includes caring for the land and respecting the resources it provides.

Anyone who has had an opportunity to be a part of this organization can tell you they focus on the overall concept of taking care of yourself, your land, and everyone who relies on you and the habitat around you.


Every year the SPNRD, along with the NRCS and the UNL Extension Office, select District Conservation Award Winners.  These individuals and groups within our District are selected based on their continued commitment to conservation stewardship.  The District has 5 possible awards each year, though not all may be filled each year.  These awards are The Conservation Farm Award, The Community Environmental Impact Award, The Environmental Educator Award, The Grassland Management Award, and The Tree Planter/Caretaker Award.  Anyone can make a nomination for these awards.  For more information on these awards or any program offered at the SPNRD please call Shelly Sutherland, Information & Education Coordinator at the SPNRD, at 308-254-2377; visit us at 551 Parkland Dr, Sidney NE.



2018 NARD Conservation Award Winners Honored

Outstanding Grassland Conservation Award

The Mathewson Family

On Monday, September 24th the Mathewsons, represented by Randy and Gina Mathewson, accepted the Award at the Nebraska Association of Resources Districts Annual Conference on behalf of The Mathewson Family.

While the Mathewson Family has shown a commitment to their rangeland throughout the generations, their commitment to each other is what keeps this operation moving forward. Dedication to sustainable agriculture and their way of life keeps them in the business of conservation, but their conservation practices keeps this family in the business of Agriculture.

Their ties to the land pales in comparison to their ties to their loved ones. The SPNRD would like to congratulate Randy, Gina, Beau and Kahla Mathewson. Your operation is an inspiration, and this award is well deserved!



2018 NARD Hall of Fame Inductee Honored

2018 Hall of Fame, Board Member Inductee

Keith Rexroth

Hall of Fame inductee Keith Rexroth from Sidney, Nebraska, was nominated for the Hall of Fame Natural Resources Districts board member award by the South Platte Natural Resources District. Keith was recognized at the Nebraska Association of Resources Districts Annual Conference on September 24th.

Keith has 24 years of service as a member of the SPNRD Board of Directors, and of those 16 were spent as the Chairman of the Board.

His commitment and input during multiple plans, rules, regulations and processes during his tenure on the Board comes from a deep-seeded love of agriculture and community. Keith has been recognized several times for that outstanding commitment, and the induction into the Hall of Fame comes as no surprise to those who have worked with him throughout the years. While Keith has retired from his position as a Director, he has not retired completely. Keith can still be found around the community or at his farm.

From all of us here in the South Platte Natural Resources District, congratulations Keith!



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