The North Central Region Water Network is pleased to announce two new seed-funded projects beginning in May 2018, addressing harmful algal blooms (HABs) in the North Central Region and beyond. The Network is partnering the Water Resource Research Institutes (WRRI) in the North Central Region and Lower Mississippi River Basin to strengthen research and Extension education HABs through the following projects:
- Extension and Water Resources Research Institute Partnership for Mitigating Harmful Algal Blooms across the Midwest and Beyond
This project is a 12-state partnership with Extension and WRRI representatives from each North Central state working together to document existing Extension responses to HAB-related issues, assess HAB-related outreach needs, and develop recommendations for strengthening HAB research and outreach to positively impact the quality of peoples’ lives. Each state is represented by extension and WRRI co-leads.
Project Director: Richard Cruse, Iowa Water Center and Iowa State University
- Reservoir Observer Student Scientists (ROSS): Engaging Youth in Harmful Algal Bloom Monitoring
This project is a five-state planning project setting the groundwork for a youth education program that engages high-school students in monitoring their local lakes and reservoirs for cyanobacterial HABs in the spring, fall, and winter. The project will monitor HABs in local watersheds in participating states, identify teachers willing to conduct the monitoring program, develop protocols and curricula for engaging high school students in HAB monitoring, and establish a mentorship group. Participating states include Missouri, South Dakota, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, with other states interested in signing on, including Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Project Directors: Dan Downing, University of Missouri Extension, and Rebecca North, University of Missouri
We look forward to working with each of these projects to facilitate progress toward the Network goals of increasing connectivity and learning between university professionals and partners, building capacity of universities to address multi-state water-related issues, and generating measureable economic, environmental and social impacts in the short and long term.
Congratulations to our recipients!