Santa Cruz River

PIMA COUNTY – The National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) has awarded the Pima County Living River Project Steering Committee and its partners with the prestigious 2018 National Environmental Achievement Award for Public Information and Education for the Living River annual report series.

The Living River Project is a Pima County partnership with Sonoran Institute to evaluate and communicate to the public the environmental health and water quality of the Santa Cruz River in northwest Tucson and Marana. The project was designed to analyze environmental data collected before, during, and after the County invested $600 million to improve wastewater reclamation facilities.

The Living River annual report series captures the project’s collaborative efforts to demonstrate the benefits of improved water quality to the community. The project has influenced public consciousness about the Santa Cruz River’s transition from an environmental liability to a community amenity.

The Living River Project provides a model for evaluating wetland health and developing multi-benefit river management programs for effluent-dependent areas in water-scarce regions.

The Pima County Living River Project Steering Committee consists of representatives from the Regional Flood Control District, Regional Wastewater Reclamation Department, Office of Sustainability and Conservation, and Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation.

The National Environmental Achievement Award recognizes member agencies that have made outstanding contributions to environmental protection and the clean water in their community. The Public Information and Education Awards honors agencies for inventive efforts to educate the public on the effects of wastewater treatment and pollution control on the environment.

The National Association of Clean Water Agencies will recognize the Living River partners at its Winter Conference on Feb. 7 in Napa, Calif.

Read more about the Living River Project here or at the Sonoran Institute website.

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