Read the latest water-related news and events!
Read the latest water-related news and events!
A monthly e-newsletter from the North Central Region Water Network
March 2022 
Fog raising over Spring Green, Wisconsin

Network News

Well it is offically spring - though it may not always feel like it! While we are moving back to more in-person events - including an in-person conference this summer - we are continuing on with our popular virtual educational events! We have three webinars you may be interested in this month:
With so many opportunities to learn, we hope you can join us! 
-Rebecca Power, Network Director and Anne Nardi, Network Communications

P.S. The call for abstracts for this summers Climate Intersections Conference has closed for oral presentations and symposiums, but we are still accepting poster abstracts until Wednesday, April 6th! Submit an abstract and share your work with colleagues from across the region under the backdrop of Lake Superior! We will be offering an award for the Best Student Poster so students are encouraged to apply.

The Current Webinar Series
Source Water Protection
Wednesday, April 13, 2022 at 2pm CT

We all deserve to have safe clean drinking water that we can trust. In order to do that, we need to ensure we are protecting water at the source – whether that is groundwater or surface water. Tune in this month’s edition of The Current Webinar as we focus on this important topic. We will hear about the Source Water Collaborative, learn how Kansas is working to protect drinking water through improved soil health, and hear how extension is working with communities on source water protection planning. Register here

John McMaine working with a student on tile drainage

Network Spotlight
This summer kicks off the regional REEU Watershed Management Research and Outreach Internship Program

This summer seven undergraduate students from across the region will be kicking off an exciting new watershed management research and outreach internship program. The program pairs undergraduates with mentors from across the region who will work closely with the students on a water management themed project. Ten mentors are participating in the project from seven different institutions, and each bring a range of expertise in topics ranging from nutrient management, limnology, stormwater management, agricultural engineering, and more. The internships are just as diverse – they range from lab work, to helping conduct field days, to running applied research studies. Read on
Kelsey Bockelman on a kayak

Leadership Spotlight
Mobile Boat Wash and Clean Boats Help Deter Aquatic Invasive Species Spread

Story by Kelsey Bockelman and Lois Wolfson, Michigan State University Extension

As the new Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Educator with Michigan State University (MSU) Extension, Kelsey Bockelman is taking steps to help reduce the spread of aquatic invasive species through two programs, the MSU Mobile Boat Wash and Michigan Clean Boats, Clean Waters. The Mobile Boat Wash’s mission is to slow the spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS) through direct education and outreach to boaters and anglers at boat launches. The program is a multi-agency partnership between MSU Extension, Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) and the Huron-Manistee Forests of the US Forest Service. The mobile boat wash program also falls under the umbrella of the Michigan Clean Boats, Clean Waters program. Read on

In The News

Upcoming Events

3rd Virtual Manure Management Workshop

Thursday, April 7, 2022 from 9:30AM - 12:30PM  ET

This is the third Manure Management Workshop and will cover testing, application, and opportunity.  Learn more

Life Hacks over Lunch: A Meet-up Series for Watershed Professionals

Friday, April 15, 2022 at 11:30AM CT

This free, virtual meet-up series is a peer-learning opportunity for watershed professionals to share ideas and advice for solving real-life challenges of watershed projects. Learn more

Let's Talk Lake Superior: Algal Blooms on Lake Superior
Tuesday, April 26, 2022 at 10AM CT

This webinar is hosted by the Lake Superior Partnership Working Group, co-led by Environment and Climate Change Canada and the EPA. The discussion will include the importance, conditions and trends, climate change impacts and actions being taken, as well as what you can do about algal blooms in your area. Learn more

Strategies for Preventing and Managing Harmful Cyanobacteria Blooms
Tuesday and Thursday, April 26 and 28, 2022 from 1:00- 3:15PM ET

This is a two part series hosted by the Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council (ITRC). The first training covers cyanobacteria and management. The second training will cover benthic cyanobacteria and their management. Both trainings will be hosted both days. Learn more

Funding and Opportunities

Commercial Vegetable Agriculture Water Quality Outreach Specialist - UW-Madison Division of Extension
This position is a part of the Agriculture Institutes Agriculture Water Quality program focusing on identifying, assessing, and helping producers implement practices that reduce nitrate leaching. This position is specifically focused on water quality in the Central Sands region of Wisconsin where the majority of commercial vegetable production takes place. Applications are due March 31, 2022 Learn more

Agriculture Water Quality Outreach Specialist - UW-Madison Division of Extension

This position is a part of the Agriculture Institute's Agriculture Water Quality program will develop and deliver outreach programming, and assess needs for and support on-farm applied research that documents water quality impacts of management practices. Applications are due March 31, 2022. Learn more

Farmer-Led Conservation & Watershed Protection Mini-Grant - Mississippi State University
Application deadline has been extended until April 1. Funds are intended to promote conservation delivery, adoption, and technology to improve water quality across the Mississippi River Basion, and to encourage partnerships and farmer-led watershed leadership. Submission deadline is April 1, 2022. Learn more

Great Lakes Sediment and Nutrient Reduction Program - Great Lakes Commission
Funding is provided to support projects that reduce nutrients and sediments entering the Great Lakes. Project types can include agricultural non-point, stormwater, and Great Lakes shoreline or streambanks. Submissions are due by April 22, 2022 by 5PM ET.
Learn more

National Competitive Grants Program - USGS and NIWR

The Water Resources Research Act Programs National Competitive Grants Program has three funding opportunities available. Proposals must be submitted by the State Water Resources Research Institute by May 10, 2022. Learn more about each opportunity: 104g General, PFAS, AIS.

Value-Added Producer Grant - USDA
Funding is intended for independent farmers, ranchers, and other producers to start or expand value-added products and businesses. Submission deadline is May 25, 2022.
Learn more

Midwest Crop Diversification Specialist - American Farmland Trust

This position is responsible for identifying strategies to integrate small grain and perennial bioenergy crops while searching for alternative market opportunities. This is a remote position that will provide support staff in the Midwest Region, including Chicago, central and southern Illinois, and Wisconsin. Applications are open until the position is filled. Learn more


Reasons and Resources for Engaging Women Farmland Owners in Conservation - North Central Region Water Network Human Capital Blog Series

It’s no secret that women in agriculture have a visibility deficiency. Yet, 43 percent of U.S. farmland is either farmed or co-farmed by women – that’s nearly 388 million acres – and at least an additional 87 million acres of rented farmland is owned by women. With landowner engagement a top priority for most conservation professionals working on watershed projects, targeted outreach to women landowners and operators will be essential to achieving a critical mass in agricultural conservation.
Read on

Imagination Team Unveils Net Zero Plus: A 2050 Vision and Cultural Transformation for Water's Role in Climate Mitigation - US Water Alliance

Conversations on climate action are evolving to include water as part of the solution to our rapidly changing environment. Climate stresses are often felt as water stresses; from more droughts and fires to sea level rise and increasingly severe flooding from hurricanes and storm surges. For decades, the water sector has developed and implemented innovative strategies to better manage these impacts, adapt to our changing climate, and foster utility and community resilience. With the water sector increasingly hit by billion-dollar disasters and serving communities facing compounding climate impacts, many water professionals want to do more. Read on

We Need to Grow the Supply Chain to Build Soil Health - The Nature Conservancy

On a cold and windy autumn day in Owatanna, T.J. Kartes looks down at long rows lined with short grasses that add a splash of color to a field that a few weeks before was filled with corn. Most corn and soybean farmers in Minnesota and the Midwest till their fields after harvest, leaving them black and bare. “I like to see the fields green in the fall and green in the spring,” says Kartes, owner-operator of Kartes Seeds, a small family business based in Blooming Prairie that specializes in providing cover crop seed and technical assistance to farmers. Read on

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