Iowans to participate in national urban, rural water summit

Iowans to participate in national urban, rural water summit

Some of the top minds in the nation will join together June 8-10 to discuss urban-rural collaboration toward “One Water” management in Atlanta.

The One Water Summit, sponsored by the U.S. Water Alliance, will bring utilities, business leaders, policymakers, environmental advocates, community leaders and researchers together to discuss collaboration and brainstorm solutions to water quality affecting communities across the nation.

Through a variety of group sessions, discussion panels and interactive workshops, summit participants will strategize how to accelerate the adoption of integrated, sustainable and inclusive approaches to water management and water quality.

A 16-member Iowa delegation will attend to engage at a more strategic level, contributing to the U.S. Water Alliance’s effort to develop a national roadmap for improvements.

“Iowa’s collaborative approach to improving water quality has received national attention,” said Sean McMahon, executive director of the Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance (IAWA). “We are fostering strong partnerships among the public and private sectors; urban and rural communities; agriculture and environmental sectors; and point source and nonpoint source organizations to find the most cost-effective ways to improve water quality. Our approach can serve as an important resource for the roadmap and we look forward to learning about successful models from other states.”

The Iowa leaders will join delegations from Ohio, New Jersey, Illinois, Missouri, San Francisco, Georgia, Wisconsin, Arizona and California.

Summit attendees will deepen their knowledge of how to use water investments to maximize economic, environmental and community benefits and leave with a deeper understanding of the critical success factors for forging partnerships, developing new collaborations for their own work and learning about new financing models. Summit participants also will have an opportunity to learn about the latest research to advance One Water management and identify new areas of necessary research.

“As the national conversation about innovative approaches to managing water quality and resources intensifies, Iowa is an important role model for building resiliency and greener infrastructure upstream,” said U.S. Water Alliance Board member and Iowa Soybean Association Director of Environmental Programs and Services Roger Wolf.

Iowa’s work will be featured in key summit presentations by Wayne Fredericks, Iowa Soybean Association president; Larry James, Urban Land Institute executive director; Steve Bruere, CEO of People’s Company; and Jonathan Gano, Des Moines Public Works director, who will each share information about Iowa’s collaborative efforts.