Current agricultural practices are thought to contribute to nonpoint source pollution because of large inputs of pesticides and fertilizers and intensive cultivation and crop production. Trends towards sustainable practices which involve crop rotations, alternative weed and pest control measures, use of manure as fertilizers, and crop residues can lead to improved resource management. Sustainable agricultural systems should be viewed not as a reversion to past systems but as adoption of systems which promote efficient resource management and improved efficiency in the use of natural resources. Many of the aspects currently considered to be sustainable agricultural practices will lead to decreased nonpoint source pollution on both the field and landscape scale. There are large changes in the physical, chemical, and biological factors which promote these reductions. The net result of adoption of these practices will be improved environmental quality; however, to realize this benefit will require both educational efforts and improved decision making tools to aid in the management decisions required in agriculture.