Iowa Water Center and Extension awarded North Central Region Water Network Grant Award

08.21.2018 – Ames, IA – The Iowa Water Center and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Water Quality Program, along with 22 other state Extension programs and Water Resources Research Institutes(WRRIs), were awarded a $10,000 planning grant from the North Central Region Water Network (NCRWN). The project, titled “Water Resources Research Institute and Extension Partnership for Mitigating Harmful Algal Blooms across the Midwest and Beyond,” seeks to strengthen the existing relationship between WRRIs and their Extension counterparts at land-grant institutions across the region in order to address a pressing water concern.
Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs), or blue green algae, are naturally occurring; however, their frequency and intensity are increasing. The rises in frequency are tightly linked to anthropogenic activities influencing nutrient delivery to surface water resources. Excess nutrients create a “greening” effect with the growth of algae, which challenges healthy ecosystem functionality.
WRRIs are responsible for research, outreach, and education related to local and regional water issues. Users of WRRI-supported research are predominantly Extension & Outreach targeted environmental audiences that include farmers, technical service providers, and natural resource managers.
This project is a joint partnership between WRRIs and Extension to start transferring HABs data into accessible information and tangible tools for the public. Forming WRRI/Extension partnerships across the NCRWN region will enable the broader impacts of HABs research to be accomplished at more rapid pace.
This project will:
  • Document existing extension responses to HAB-related issues
  • Assess outreach programming needs in the NCRWN region
  • Develop recommendations for strengthening HAB research and outreach to positively impact the quality of peoples’ lives

Iowa Water Center staff will facilitate a HABs working session with project partners as part of the North Central Region One Water Action Forum in Indianapolis, Indiana this winter.
Full list of Project Partners

Iowa Water Center
Iowa State University Extension
University of Illinois Extension
Illinois Water Resources Center
Purdue University Extension
Indiana Water Resources Resarch Institute
Kansas State University Extension
Kansas Water Resources Institute
University of Minnesota Extension
Minnesota Water Resources Center
University of Nebraska Extension
Nebraska Water Center
North Dakota State University Extension
North Dakota Water Resources Research Institute
The Ohio State University
Ohio Water Resources Center
South Dakota Water Research Institute
South Dakota State University Extension
University of Missouri Extension
Missouri Water Resources Research Institute
Michigan State University
Michigan Institute of Water Research
University of Wisconsin Extension
Wisconsin Water Resources Institute 
Media Contact: Hanna Bates, Iowa Water Center (
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