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Press Release
March 10, 2015

Oklahoma Water Appreciation Day Set for March 11

The tenth annual Oklahoma Water Appreciation Day is scheduled to be held Wednesday, March 11th in the 4th floor Rotunda of the Oklahoma State Capitol. Governor Mary Fallin and the Oklahoma Water Resources Board (OWRB) will host the event featuring water-related agency and organization booths and displays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Capitol’s 4th floor rotunda. Water Appreciation Day presents a unique opportunity for water-focused groups to demonstrate the importance of Oklahoma’s water resources as well as provide information on their water management, conservation, and educational programs for state legislators and other government officials.

At 9:30 a.m. during the event, Governor Mary Fallin, area legislators, and local officials will attend a check presentation ceremony in the State Capitol's Blue Room for three Oklahoma communities that are receiving Water for 2060 Drought Grants. The grants, awarded to Boise City, Fort Supply, and Shattuck, were announced last week by Governor Fallin and the OWRB. The grants will fund both water infrastructure and technology upgrade projects to save nearly 17 million gallons of water each year.

"This celebration of Oklahoma’s diverse water resources is especially appropriate now as we wrestle with myriad impacts resulting from a fifth straight year of drought and we continue implementation of Water for 2060, our major statewide water conservation campaign," says J.D. Strong, OWRB Executive Director. "Through the check presentation, we also hope to showcase the significant impact that conservation and infrastructure investments can make by saving millions of gallons of water annually in drought-impacted parts of the state."

Arising from the most recent update of the Oklahoma Comprehensive Water Plan in 2012, Water for 2060 is a legislative initiative that establishes a statewide goal of maintaining statewide fresh water use at current levels through 2060 while preserving Oklahoma's population growth and economic development goals. An Advisory Council is currently studying innovative, voluntary solutions and incentives to accomplish this goal including: improved irrigation/farming techniques, water recycling/reuse systems, high efficiency plumbing codes, smart irrigation, education programs to change consumer habits, efficient water pricing, financial assistance incentives, and increased leak detection and prevention. The Council's final report is due to the Governor and State Legislature by the end of 2015.

In addition to the OWRB, and several academic institutions and civic organizations focused on water issues, the following state and federal agencies will also be featured in the State Capitol exhibition on March 11:

  • Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Commission
  • Oklahoma Department of Transportation – Waterways
  • Oklahoma Conservation Commission
  • Oklahoma Department of Mines
  • Oklahoma Geological Survey
  • Oklahoma Corporation Commission
  • Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality
  • Oklahoma Climatological Survey
  • US Bureau of Reclamation
  • USGS - Oklahoma Water Science Center

For more information on Oklahoma's Water for 2060 initiative, visit http://www.owrb.ok.gov/supply/conservation.php.

For more information on Water Appreciation Day, call Cole Perryman at 405-530-8800.

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