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Great Plains Region
Billings, Mont.
Media Contact:
Mark Andersen
406-247-7610

Released On: July 17, 2003

Reclamation to Host Water 2025 Conference in Billings, Montana
A one-day conference to encourage dialog on ways to prevent the critical water supply problems facing many areas of the West is being sponsored by the Bureau of Reclamation in Billings, Montana, July 29.

This conference is one of a series of eight regional consulting sessions being conducted throughout the West this summer. The goal of the conferences is to identify the watersheds facing the greatest potential risk in the next 25 years, evaluate the most effective ways of addressing water supply challenges, and recommend cooperative planning approaches and tools that have the most likelihood of success.

John Keys, Commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation, is scheduled to attend the conference and provide an overview of Water 2025. He will be joined on the day-long program by panelists representing agencies and organizations who deal with water issues in Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Nebraska and Kansas.

The Billings conference will be in the Wood Room (3rd floor) at the Billings Sheraton Hotel, 27 North 27th Street, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

The conference is open to the public and there is no charge to attend; however, pre-registration is required as space is limited. A conference web site at www.usbr.gov/gp/water2025/mt/ provides more information and pre-registration material. Printed registration material may be obtained by contacting Mark Andersen at (406) 247-7609.

Water 2025 Regional Conferences have already been held in Phoenix, Arizona, Las Vegas, Nevada, Sacramento, California, Salt Lake City, Utah and Boise, Idaho. Two additional Water 2025 regional conferences will be held following the Billings conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on August 12 and Austin, Texas, on August 14.

Maryanne Bach, Regional Director for the Bureau of Reclamation’s Great Plains Region said, "We welcome the opportunity to host the Billings Water 2025 Conference and to provide a forum for continuing dialog between the tribes, state, local and federal government, the conservation community and other affected stakeholders. To successfully plan and invest for our future water needs, Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton’s vision of collaboration between the affected parties is essential."

Questions regarding Water 2025 or the Billings event may be directed to Mark Andersen, Great Plains Region, Public Affairs Officer, telephone: (406) 247-7609 or e-mail mandersen@gp.usbr.gov.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov.