Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Meeting to Examine Emerging Challenges for Wisconsin's Water

Annual meeting of the American Water Resources Association–Wisconsin Section. Two hundred researchers are expected to attend this year's meeting.

WHEN: March 4-5, 2010

WHERE: Madison Marriott West, Middleton, Wis., (608) 831-2000

AGENDA: The three plenary speakers are:
  • Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation's Mark Borchardt, who will begin the meeting with a talk on “Groundwater-Borne Viruses and Illnesses Risk: Policy Successes and Failures.”
  • Paul Kent, an attorney with Anderson & Kent, S.C., who will present a talk entitled “Water Law and Wisconsin.”
  • Jonathan Patz of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, who will present the closing plenary, “Climate Change: Implications for Wisconsin's Water Quality.”
Throughout the two-day meeting, leading water scientists, resource managers and planners from around the state will present their latest research findings about Wisconsin’s most pressing water issues. Friday morning, March 5, Warren Gebert of the U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Water Science Center will discuss the effectiveness of more than 30 years of stormwater management in Middleton, Wis. Using data from the Pheasant Branch Creek, Gebert and his colleagues found that best management practices used over the last three decades have decreased the annual sediment and phosphorus loads in the creek even as increased urbanization led to higher annual runoff and flood peaks. Since 2002, the annual sediment load has decreased 45 percent and the phosphorus load decreased 48 percent. Other streams draining into Lake Mendota did not show the same decrease, suggesting that Middleton's stormwater management has been largely successful. However, the researchers found that chloride levels from road deicers regularly exceed US EPA standards, a finding echoed in a separate regional and national study that will be presented on Thursday afternoon by Steven Corsi, also of the U.S. Geological Survey Wisconsin Water Resources Science Center.

Following the presentations, at 12:15 p.m. on Friday, March 5, researchers interested in the effects of climate change on Wisconsin's water resources will convene to develop and prioritize water resource management adaptation strategies for the state of Wisconsin that can be applied on local, regional and statewide scales.

A full program and abstracts are available online.

BACKGROUND: The Wisconsin Section of the American Water Resources Association provides an interdisciplinary forum for people involved in all aspects of water resources research and management.

The meeting is sponsored by the UW Water Resources Institute, UW-Stevens Point Center for Watershed Science, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey, and the U.S. Geological Survey Wisconsin Water Science Center. The University of Wisconsin Water Resources Institute is one of 54 such institutes nationwide, all focused on addressing problems of water supply and water quality at local, state, regional and national levels.

For more information, please contact: Kevin Masarik, President, AWRA Wisconsin Section, (715) 346-4276,