Released On: June 22, 2012
The Bureau of Reclamation and the Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology) established the YRBWEP Workgroup in 2009 to develop comprehensive solutions to water resource issues in the Yakima Basin by drawing on 30-plus years of information and experiences gained under YRBWEP and various planning efforts.
AWRA Board President William Battaglin noted that the IWRM Award was the first of its kind and that the YRBWEP Workgroup, "exemplifies the coordinated development and management of water, land and related resources to maximize economic and social welfare without compromising the sustainability of ecosystems and the environment."
"Nothing about water in the West is simple," said Ecology Director Ted Sturdevant. "It's easy to be limited by the approaches of the past. We’re delighted to be moving forward with a plan that overcomes historical hurdles to create a better future. Recognition like this validates those efforts."
Reclamation and Ecology are joined in the Workgroup by the Yakama Nation, irrigation districts, environmental organizations, and other federal and non-federal partners.
"This is a great honor for our partners and is a confirmation that diverse groups can accomplish incredible things that will benefit people, the economy, and the environment for generations," said Reclamation Commissioner Michael L. Connor.
Congress authorized YRBWEP in 1979, in response to water rights negotiations which began in 1977. Since that time, YRBWEP success stories include several habitat restoration projects, infrastructure upgrades that enhance water conservation and increase instream flows for fish.
AWRA will present the award at its annual awards luncheon on Nov. 14, 2012, in Jacksonville, Fla.
AWRA is a non-profit association founded in 1964 to advance professionals in water resources management, research, and education. AWRA's multidisciplinary members include water resources experts such as engineers, educators, foresters, biologists, ecologists, geographers, managers, regulators, hydrologists and attorneys.
DOI | Recreation.gov | USA.gov
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