ARCHIVE SITE - Last updated Jan. 19, 2017. Please visit www.NACWA.org for the latest NACWA information.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Successful Partnerships between Agriculture and Water Utilities Highlighted in White Paper
A white paper entitled Collaborating for Healthy Watersheds, highlighting nine successful municipal-agricultural collaborations that address water quality issues at the watershed level, is being released today by the National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA), AGree, and the U.S. Water Alliance. The three organizations collaborated on the effort, which describes partnership models between municipalities and farmers that can lead to progress on attaining water quality goals and reducing nutrient pollution in our nation’s surface waters.
"When agricultural activities contribute to water quality impairments, as they too frequently do, it often means a big loss for us that work the land. It is our precious soil and expensive nutrients running into waterways that causes the problems," said Jim Moseley, Indiana farmer, Co-Chair of AGree, and former Deputy Secretary of USDA. "There are win-win opportunities for farmers to work with water utilities to improve water quality in their watersheds. As the case studies in this paper demonstrate, the bottom line of both farmers and utilities can benefit from collaboration. This is a very positive path forward."
The traditional approach of building more and more advanced treatment facilities can result in an economic burden to many communities. Therefore, both water and wastewater utilities have looked for more cost-effective solutions to create healthy watersheds and good water quality. One of the most promising approaches is to look upstream in the watershed to see if there are ways to prevent nutrients and other pollutants from being released into waterways in collaboration with agriculture and other partners.
“What’s become increasingly evident is that collaboration between agriculture and the water sector is key to water sustainably,” explains Dick Champion, U.S. Water Alliance Chair. “This report represents progress in that direction.”
The nine highlighted projects discussed in the white paper include:
"We hope that the white paper will encourage many stakeholders to seriously consider and become involved in innovative collaborations with nontraditional partners to improve water quality in a more holistic manner. This White Paper demonstrates that such partnerships are indeed achievable and successful," states Ken Kirk, Executive Director of NACWA.
NACWA represents the interests of more than 300 public agencies and organizations that have made the pursuit of scientifically based, technically sound and cost effective laws and regulations their objective. NACWA members serve the majority of the sewered population in the United States and collectively treat and reclaim more than 18 billion gallons of wastewater daily.
Membership gives you access to the tools to keep you up to date on legislative, regulatory, legal and management initiatives.