Before you skip out check out these water-related news and events!
Before you skip out check out these water-related news and events!
A monthly e-newsletter from the North Central Region Water Network
May 2021
Boat on Mackinac Island in MIchigan at sunset with an American Flag

Network News

It's almost Memorial Day. The year seems to be flying by with everyone busier than ever – we did not think that was possible! We hope you are able to take some time to take a breath and reflect. The sacrifices of our veterans and those we have lost in service to the United States are so great and we honor their contributions to our country.   

On the home front, there are areas in our region that are currently facing drought. If your community is dealing with drought, be sure to check out the newly released drought scenario planning guide by the National Drought Mitigation Center. This resource was developed with Network support to help communities plan, think about, and prepare for drought. It's never too late to start!

-Rebecca Power and Anne Nardi, the North Central Region Water Network team

P.S. Want your water questions answered by colleagues? Use the North Central Region Water Network listserv to get answers quickly. To subscribe, email
Photo by Wendy Johnson and Practical Farmers of Iowa. People gathered by a barn at a field day

The Current
Using Social Norms to Promote Conservation Adoption
Wedensday, June 9, 2021 at 2pm CT

Whether we like it or not, a large part of our work as conservation professionals is in communicating conservation to stakeholders. The May edition of The Current Webinar series will focus on a well-known phenomenon used in communications to influence behaviors - social norms. What do we know about social norms and how they impact the agricultural community? How can we use social norms to promote conservation adoption? Tune in as we discuss these topics and more! Register here
Photo by Wendy Johnson and Practical Farmers of Iowa
Canva Event Promotion, NC3 Climate Conference

Network Spotlight
North Central Climate Collaborative provides opportunity for extension professionals to improve climate knowledge

Climate variability continues to be a defining factor in agriculture and water quality in the North Central Region. Extreme weather events are occurring at increased frequencies and can dry out farm fields, flood city streets, and damage key infrastructure. Extension professionals play an important role educating communities, farmers, and municipalities on the impacts of climate change and what increased climate variability means for them. Extension and other natural resource managers also serve as a critical link between communities and the climate information they need to implement climate-smart practices. Read on
Saturated Buffer. Photo Credit: NRCS/SWCS photo by Lynn Betts

Leadership Spotlight

North Dakota's Soil and Water Conservation Leadership Academy provides conservation professionals critical soft skills tomake water stewardship a reality

Water in North Dakota, as in other states, presents unique challenges that vary by geography and scale. In the eastern part of the state, with its heavy clay soils and flat topography, excess water is often an issue. Further west, precipitation is considerably lower and problems associated with a lack of water are more common. Statewide, nonpoint source pollution, often in the form of excess nutrients, can lead to water quality problems at both large and small scales. Point source pollution also poses a challenge, with sources varying widely from one corner of the state to another. Read on
Photo by NRCS/SWCS photo by Lynn Betts

In The News

Upcoming Events
What You Can Do to Protect Water Quality at Home Webinar
June 10, 2021

Join the University of Illinois Extension June 10th at 1pm CT to hear ways you an your family improve our world's water quality at home. This webinar provides background information and empowers participants with techniques and resources to keep nutrients in their yard. Topics include rain gardens, leaf management, and lawn care. Guiding the discussion are staff at Extension's Red Oak Rain Garden: Eliana Brown, Layne Knoche, and Kate Gardiner. Learn more

Center for Commercial Agriculture Corn and Soybean Outlook Update
June 14, 2021

Each month the Purdue Center for Commercial Agriculture will host a free webinar providing an update on the corn and soybean outlook following release of USDA’s monthly Crop Production and World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) reports. The webinars will review the USDA reports and provide implications for the current and upcoming crop year. Corn and soybean exports, ethanol demand, corn and soybean basis, and farm income projections will also be regular topics. The next outlook webinar is at 12:30 p.m. EDT on Monday, June 14, 2021. Purdue ag economists Michael Langemeier, Nathanael Thompson and James Mintert will discuss the June Crop Production and World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) USDA reports. Learn more

Heart of the Farm: Women in Agriculture Coffee Chats Series

June 14, 2021

University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension’s Heart of the Farm-Women in Agriculture program will start it’s summer online ‘Coffee Chats’ series on Monday June 14th at 10 a.m. ‘Coffee Chats’ will be held on the 2nd Monday of each month (10 a.m. – 11 a.m.) through August 2021 and again from November 2021-March 2022. The Heart of the Farm-Women in Agriculture program addresses the needs of farm women by providing education on farm business topics, connecting them with agricultural resources and creating support networks. There is no charge for attending the series but registration is required. Learn More

Funding and Opportunities

The Water Resources Research Institutes National Competitive Grants program now accepting proposals for three specialty RFPs

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the National Institutes for Water Resources, requests proposals for research projects to improve and enhance the nation's water supply and availablity and promote exploration of new ideas that address or expand our understanding of water problems. Priority areas include 1) Socioeconomics and water use, 2) Water related hazards and public health, and 3) Harmful algal blooms. The deadline to apply in June 15, 2021. Learn more

Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Extension, Education & USDA Climate Hubs Partnership
This program area priority will support projects that provide effective, translatable, and scalable approaches to address climate change through regional partnerships including the USDA Climate Hubs and extension. The USDA Climate Hubs develop and deliver science-based, region-specific information and technologies, with USDA agencies and partners, to agricultural and natural resource managers that enable climate informed decision-making and provide access to assistance to implement those decisions. The regional partnerships should work towards one or more of the following long-term socioeconomic impacts: 1) net-zero emissions agriculture; 2) working lands adapted to climate change; 3) a diverse workforce that can effectively communicate about climate change with a variety of stakeholders and can incorporate climate considerations into managing working lands and 4) climate justice including equity in opportunities and burden-sharing. Applications are due Thursday, July 22, 2021. Learn more


Working Together for Clean Water -

The availability and sustainable management of water as well as safe sanitation for all are important goals of the United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. But how is this to be achieved in a country like Peru, where water is scarce but more and more of it will be needed due to population growth and the economic boom? To this end, the TRUST project developed concepts that combine research and practical knowledge from the natural, engineering, and social sciences and involve those affected at the local and regional levels. The final report, which is now available, results in five theses and a total of 20 recommendations for water resources, water use, and water management. Read on

EPA adds new PFAS to its drinking water treatability database - Iowa Water Center 
As part of its commitment to address drinking water challenges across America, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) announced an update to the Drinking Water Treatability Database with new references and treatment options for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). This update will help states, tribes, local governments, and water utilities make informed decisions to manage PFAS in their communities. Read on

Benefits of wheat in corn-soybean crop rotations - Newswise

The United States grows a lot of corn and soybeans. Some researchers think it’s a good idea to add wheat into that mix. A new study shows that including wheat once every 4 years in rotations with corn and soybean can have many benefits. The research was recently published in Agronomy Journal. Read on

New Study Confirms Increased Benefits of Forests on Carbon Dioxide Capture - Ohio State University Extension

A new study from Ohio State University's Extension shows that forests can have a large impact on mitigating carbox dioxide emissions. "Within a decade of adding up to 7 million more acres of forests & more intensively managing 50–70 million acres of forest land, an additional 160 million tons of carbon dioxide would be taken out of the atmosphere every year." - Brent Sohngen. Read on

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