Sealing Abandoned Wells

 ​Abandoned, uncapped wells are an inherent danger to our water supply. Unsealed wells that are no  longer in use can directly transport anything that is dropped in them chemicals, oils, and  metals straight to the groundwater supply. 
 Why seal water wells?

  • Groundwater protection
  • Safety
  • Water supply protection
  • Aesthetic value
  • Peace of mind
  • Potential liability
  • Restore the environment
  • Restore full use of the land
  • Responsible transfer of land
  • It’s the law!


The SWCD, through the IL Department of Ag, cost shares 60% of the cost to decommission an  abandoned well, with a cap of $400. The sealing must meet required design and construction  guidelines, in accordance with the Illinois Water Well Construction Code. 

 Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program CREP

CREP is an enhanced version of the USDA Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). The CREP  Program is facilitated by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to permanently retire land not  optimal for crop production. In Illinois, landowners implement conservation practices in the eligible  CREP watersheds (all of Macon County) to reduce sedimentation and nutrients, improve water  quality, and to create and enhance critical habitat for fish and wildlife populations.
 CREP is restoring large, contiguous land corridors to native vegetation and providing permanent  protection along Illinois' rivers and streams.
 More than 90% of land in Illinois is privately owned. Programs, like CREP, are essential to  addressing environmental issues of both local and national significance. 

 LDWP      CPP     CREP     SSRP     Well Sealings       Technical Assistance 

​​​​ Lake Decatur Watershed Program LDWP

 Since 1941, the City of Decatur has partnered with the Macon County SWCD to assist  landowners within the Lake Decatur Watershed to implement practices that reduce the amount of  sediment carried into the Upper Sangamon River, eventually settling in Lake Decatur. With  dredging costs on the rise and a continued need for more storage in Lake Decatur, the City and  the SWCD are joining forces to reduce erosion on the land. 

 The Lake Decatur Watershed Program (LDWP) offers 60% cost assistance to landowners to  install practices that will reduce soil erosion and/or increase water quality. Applicable practices  include:
  Grassed Waterways - Terraces - Streambank Restoration - Structures Wetlands - Filter Strips -  Drainage Water Management - Cover Crops* - No-till/Strip till * - Nutrient Management*

 *All management practices only apply to first-time fields and are capped at 40 acres. (More acres  can be enrolled through a federal program).

 Practices are assessed by determining how much soil could be saved, and how cost efficient the  practice would be. If approved, the Macon County SWCD will work with the landowner to develop  design plans, and oversee construction throughout the project. 

  Conservation Practices Program CPP

 Assist landowners with sheet and rill erosion exceeding “T” (tolerable soil loss level), or with  ephemeral/gully erosion, in constructing projects which conserve soil, protect water quality and  reduce flooding.
 Address water quality issues related to sediment, nutrients, and other non-point source pollutants.
 In Macon County, CPP funds have been used to: construct waterways, install block chutes,  construct terraces, plant cover crops, and a variety of other projects. If you have erosion, and are  not quite sure how to treat it, we can do a site visit, and come up with the best possible solutions for  your particular project. The maximum cost-share for this program is 60%.

​  Technical Assistance

Need help with erosion control?

Are you wondering what would be a good place for a pond?

How about a waterway that isn't doing what it was a couple years ago?

Macon County Soil and Water offers FREE technical assistance with terraces, grade control structures, sediment basins, cover crops and constructed wetlands. 

Streambank Stabilization and Restoration Practice SSRP

 Streambank erosion is one of the major causes of pollution in our county’s streams and lakes. When  left untreated, streambank erosion becomes a serious threat to the land, water, plant, and animal  resources we hold dear. It can lead to loss or damage of valuable farmland, wildlife habitat,  buildings, roads, bridges, and other public and private structures and property. SSRP provide  assistance (up to 75% cost-share) to Illinois landowners to stabilize or restore severely eroding  banks that qualify. SSRP will also provide 100% cost-share for selected demonstration sites. While  solutions are site-specific, most fixes involve using low-cost vegetative or other bio-engineering  techniques to stabilize the eroding banks.


3342 N. President Howard Brown Blvd.            Decatur, Illinois  62521

217-877-5670 (Ext. 3)

Macon County Soil &

Water Conservation District