Agricultural Environmental Management (AEM)

Farmers have long been regarded as the original stewards of the land because a farm’s livelihood directly depends on the health and vitality of the soil and water resources.  AEM is a voluntary program designed to help farmers further protect those and other important natural resources.  By participating in AEM, farmers can document their environmental stewardship and contribute to a positive image of agriculture in their communities.  If a potential environmental concern is identified through the AEM assessment process, farmers can then take steps to plan for and then implement an appropriate course of action through the AEM approach.  The AEM assessment, planning and implementation process helps to target limited local, state and federal technical and financial resources to farms with the greatest potential for impacting the environment.  The farmer is always the ultimate decision-maker in cooperation with members of the local AEM team which help to ensure that farm business objectives are met while also achieving local, state and federal environmental and water quality goals.  The primary goal of AEM is to protect and enhance the environment while maintaining the viability of agriculture in New York State.  

If you are interested in participating, please complete the Tier I Inventory Sheet and return it to our office. (Click here for an AEM Tier 1 Inventory Sheet).  A Conservation District staff member will contact you to proceed with the planning process. 


Albany County AEM Strategic Plan [PDF]