Watershed Education Resources

Introduction

Watershed education is an important tool for protecting and restoring both urban and rural watersheds. The primary goals of watershed education include increasing community awareness, preserving local water resources, and gradually changing resident behaviors to reduce the amount of pollutants from stormwater runoff. Education programs may focus outreach on a single behavior on a broad basis, or concentrate their efforts at the subwatershed level. The most effective watershed education programs focus on key pollutants or behaviors, carefully target their audiences, and survey residents to understand their attitudes before designing education campaigns.

Getting in Step: A Guide to Effective Outreach in Your Watershed

The Getting in Step guidebook was produced in 1998 by The Council of State Governments (CSG) and provides information on some of the tools you will need to develop and implement an effective watershed outreach plan. A step-by-step approach to outreach planning and implementation guides you through the outreach planning process and helps you effectively reach your target audience. The guide also provides tips and examples for developing and enhancing outreach materials, as well as specific tips on working with the news media to get your message out through improved media coverage.

EPA Office of Water, Office of Wastewater Management Storm Water Phase II - Menu of Best Management Practices (BMPs)
http://cfpub.epa.gov/npdes/stormwater/swphase2.cfm?program_id=6

The menu is intended to provide guidance to small MS4s covered under Phase II regulations on the types of practices they could use to develop and implement their storm water management programs. The menu is intended as guidance only, and is based on the six minimum control measures in Phase II. The site reviews the Phase II requirements for each of the minimum control measures and then the BMPs which could be used to implement the measure. Because three of the six minimum management measures deal directly with education - public education and outreach on storm water impacts, public involvement/participation, and pollution prevention/good housekeeping for municipal operations - we have included a link here. At the main National Menu of BMPs website, there are also downloadable PDF versions of all the .html files.

The Practice of Watershed Protection Section Ten

Section ten of Center for Watershed Protection's The Practice of Watershed Protection compiles articles on watershed stewardship from all past issues of the Center's technical journal, Watershed Protection Techniques. The articles are available for viewing and download in .PDF format and cover topics such as watershed education, watershed advocacy, and pollution prevention.

Watershed Education
126. Understanding Watershed Behavior
127. On Watershed Education

Watershed Advocacy
128. Choosing the Right Watershed Management Structure

Pollution Prevention at Home
129. The Peculiarities of Perviousness
130. Toward a Low Input Lawn
131. Homeowner Survey Reveals Lawn Management Practices in Virginia
132. Nitrate Leaching Potential From Lawns and Turfgrass
133. Insecticide Impact on Urban and Suburban Wildlife
134. Minimizing the Impact of Golf Courses on Streams
135. Groundwater Impacts of Golf Course Development in Cape Cod

Pollution Prevention at Work
136. Practical Pollution Prevention Practices Outlined for West Coast Service Stations
137. Practical Pollution Prevention Emphasized for Industrial Stormwater
138. Milwaukee Survey Used to Design Pollution Prevention Program
139. Rating Deicing Agents: Road Salt Stands Firm
140. Pollution Prevention for Auto Recyclers

Washington State Department of Ecology, Water Quality Program Showcase of Exceptional Education Products
http://www.ecy.wa.gov/forms/showcase/

This tool is primarily designed for environmental educators in the Pacific Northwest to find outstanding products related to nonpoint water pollution. The site comes with a searchable database of education products that come in a variety of formats -- publications, videos, classroom materials, etc. Contact information is provided for products, along with a brief description and a rating system based on execution, effectiveness, relevance, and adaptability.

Stormwater Strategies: Community Responses to Runoff Pollution
http://www.nrdc.org/water/pollution/storm/stoinx.asp

This 1999 report from the Natural Resources Defense Council documents some of the most effective strategies being employed by communities around the country to control urban stormwater runoff pollution. One hundred case studies are compiled and evaluated to serve as a guide for local decisionmakers, municipal officials, and citizens concerned about their local water quality and aquatic environment. The case studies are presented both by region, and by the following five categories of stormwater measures including promoting public education and participation and implementing pollution prevention for municipal operations.

EPA Office of Water, Office of Wetlands Oceans, and Watersheds - Outreach Page
http://www.epa.gov/owow/watershed/outreach/outreachnonjs.html

The EPA Office of Wetlands Oceans, and Watersheds Outreach page has many materials available to help you understand and promote watershed protection. The types of materials available include: watershed-related pictures and clip art, activities for kids, watershed education events, and links to watershed related web sites.

EPA Office of Water, Office of Wetlands Oceans, and Watersheds - Watershed Academy Web
http://www.epa.gov/watertrain/

The Watershed Academy was started by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Water in 1994 to provide training courses and educational materials on the basics of a watershed approach. The website includes web-based training modules that present a basic but broad introduction to watershed management. The training modules cover many watershed management topics and are divided into six watershed training themes. Web modules resemble contain 25 to 50 color illustrations and photos on a topic and contain hot links for those seeking greater detail. Self-tests enable trainees to check their retention and see immediate results. The length and complexity of each module varies and each module can require ½ to 2 hours each to complete. Completing a series of 15 of these modules can earn a Watershed Academy Web Training Certificate that allows the user to document there leaning.

A Survey of Resident Nutrient Behavior In the Chesapeake Bay
Download document in .pdf format here (284 kb)

This July 1999 Center for Watershed Protection report examines the role of education efforts to reduce nutrient loads in the Chesapeake Bay and other parts of the country. The results of a survey of 733 Chesapeake Bay residents concerning their nutrient practices and attitudes as they pertain to lawn care, septic system maintenance, and pet waste disposal are detailed. This information is used to gauge outreach methods that work best to attract resident attention, and to provide recommendations for creating and enhancing watershed education programs and their ability to produce changes in the behaviors of watershed residents. This publication is in .PDF format and is approximately 284Kb in size.