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Who We Are

Welcome to IOWATER!

Water quality is something that affects all of us - one way or another. "All of us" includes all living things, from the largest whale to the smallest amoeba, from tiny duckweed to the tallest redwoods. Without water, all life on earth would cease to exist. Although the quantity of water on earth will never change, its distribution and quality affect us all. With 97.5% of the global water supply tied up in saltwater resources, and nearly 2% of freshwater frozen in glaciers, it is very important to manage, monitor, and protect the remaining 0.5% of freshwater that is available to us. The absence of usable water would be the same as having no water at all.

IOWATER, Iowa's volunteer water quality monitoring program, empowers citizens to take a proactive approach to water quality. By monitoring the water resources in our backyards, we can ensure the protection, longevity and productivity of high quality water resources, as well as evaluate, assess, and improve those of lower quality. By becoming an IOWATER volunteer, you are not only provided with monitoring equipment, but you are also given the freedom to monitor wherever and whenever you choose. The program brings people closer to the landscapes that surround them and encourages them to develop a sense of place within the watersheds in which they live. This tie between ourselves and the water resources that give us life will lead to the understanding, respect, and protection of Iowa’s water bodies long into the future.

IOWATER - Coming Soon To A Community Near You

Becoming involved in IOWATER is easy. Workshops are held throughout the summer at various locations across the state. Registration information is located at IOWATER Workshop Schedule. Walk in an IOWATER workshop as a citizen, and walk out as an IOWATER Certified Volunteer Water Quality Monitor!

Questions? Please contact someone from the IOWATER Staff

  • Expand citizen volunteer water monitoring in Iowa.
  • Provide a balanced approach for citizens to become involved in protecting and improving streams, rivers and lakes.
  • Develop opportunities for citizens to experience and discover the clean water
  • Develop a user-friendly process for data collection and interpretation to increase accurate information on Iowa's waters.
IOWATER Strategies
  • Establish training programs for volunteers that will improve the quality and quantity of water data collected
  • Support existing volunteer water monitoring efforts. Establish outreach programs to increase citizen awareness of and responsibility for local water resources.
  • Provide a framework of information for citizen groups to use in actively promoting responsible decision making in protecting local water quality.
  • Assist new partnerships and alliances throughout Iowa in designing and implementing water monitoring projects.
  • Facilitate communication among volunteer groups, local landowners, and government agencies, to promote sharing of data and resources.
  • Develop a statewide volunteer database, available to all, for baseline water quality information and establishing long-term water quality trends.
  • Integrate IOWATER into conservation education programs in Iowa.

IOWATER Partners
Our diversity is our strength! IOWATER is an expanding statewide partnership effort of:

Area Education Agencies

Community Colleges of Iowa

Conservation Districts of Iowa

Hawkeye Fly Fishing Association

Iowa Association of Naturalists

Iowa Conservation Education Council

Iowa Department of Agriculture & Land Stewardship

Iowa Department of Natural Resources

Iowa Division of the Izaak Walton League of America

Iowa Drainage District Association

Iowa Environmental Council

Iowa Farm Bureau Federation

Iowa Resource Conservation & Development

Iowa State University Extension

Iowa Student Environmental Council

Iowa Water Pollution Control Association

Natural Resources Conservation Service

Trees Forever

University Hygienic Laboratory – University of Iowa

Volunteer monitoring groups across Iowa