Community Water Resource Center
Our mission is to serve the education, outreach and research needs of northern Idaho relating to local water quality and resource issues.
- Outreach and Education
- Citizen Science
Aquifer Protection District: The purpose of the Aquifer Protection District is the protection of groundwater quality by creating fee based funding for the following endeavors:
- Assist regulatory bodies with enforcement of existing regulations, monitor and inspect potential sources of pollution,
- Implement educational programs for the entire community that enhances protection of the ground water, and
- Coordinate the work of public agencies to assist in the prevention of degradation of our valuable ground water and to avoid the extensive cost of remedial action.
Coeur d'Alene Lake Management Plan: In an effort to address the many issues facing Coeur d’Alene Lake, the Coeur d’Alene Tribe (Tribe) and the State of Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) collaboratively developed the 2009 Lake Management Plan (2009 LMP) with the goal: to protect and improve lake water quality by limiting basin-wide nutrient inputs that impair lake water quality conditions, which in turn influence the solubility of mining-related metals contamination contained in lake sediments.
Coeur d'Alene Tribe Lake Management: The Tribe’s Lake Management Department has the mission of protecting and enhancing Coeur d’Alene Lake and its surrounding watershed. Their goal is to increase the lake’s cultural, spiritual, subsistence and recreational benefits to the Coeur d’Alene Tribe and neighboring communities. Their charter covers both on-Reservation and ceded portions of Coeur d’Alene Lake.
Coeur d'Alene Wastewater Treatment Plant: While secondary-level municipal treatment was mandated by the Clean Water Act of 1972, it was operational in Coeur d’Alene in 1939; making it one of the first such municipal plants in the world. The city has always utilized conventional primary clarification and fixed-film “trickling filters” as the secondary treatment process followed by chlorination. Beginning in 1982, the plant has undergone 11 major “phases” of construction, culminating with solids handing and administration buildings.
IDAH2O Master Water Stewards: University of Idaho Extension is offering an innovative program to train citizen volunteers about regional water quality issues. Trained volunteers, called Master Water Stewards, are provided water monitoring kits and technical support.
Idaho Department of Environmental Quality: DEQ's Water Quality Division is responsible for assuring that the state's surface, ground, and drinking water resources meet state water quality standards. DEQ staff monitor lakes, rivers and streams throughout the North Idaho region to identify opportunities to protect water quality, fisheries values, and recreation on the water. Citizen’s Watershed Advisory Groups are incorporated to provide input on projects to protect and improve water quality.
Managing Idaho's Landscapes for Ecosystem Services (MILES): MILES is an National Science Foundation/EPSCoR-funded project to advance the understanding of feedbacks between social and ecological systems and ecosystem services in mid-sized cities in the face of climate change and urban growth. The program builds Idaho's capacity to study complex social-ecological processes, especially those associated with water demand and valuation of ecosystem services. This research characterizes patterns and identifies social drivers of urban growth and ecological change, including valuable ecosystem services. Outcomes will include an integrated modeling framework and visualization and virtualization tools. Projects are currently underway in three Idaho locations: Boise, Coeur d'Alene and Pocatello.
Panhandle Health District: The Panhandle Health District’s Environmental Health Section implements many programs designed to protect surface water and groundwater, particularly where those resources are essential to public health. With an emphasis on prevention, PHD’s programs include Rathdrum Prairie Aquifer Protection (proper storage and handling of chemicals, limiting on-site sewage disposal to one house per five acres, zero discharge of non-domestic wastewater, education and outreach), permitting on-site sewage disposal systems, oversight of small public water systems, review and approval of new subdivisions, and registration of Shallow Injection Wells.
Restoration Partnership: The Restoration Partnership was developed by the Coeur d’Alene Basin Natural Resource Trustees as a way to involve the public in natural resource restoration. Our primary mission is to "return our natural resources to a healthy condition by developing and implementing a restoration plan for the Coeur d’Alene Basin." We engage the public by providing ways to help shape the plan, propose specific restoration projects, and partner with us on future restoration related project work.
Panhandle Stormwater & Erosion Education Program (SEEP): The SEEP Program focuses on increasing skill and knowledge levels in the storm water and erosion fields and fostering communication and collaboration between industry, agencies and landowners. The SEEP program is also committed to protecting resources, including people, water and the economy. The program continues to develop a local pool of experts as resources for the development community and strives to change current perception in development practices.
Lake Social Ecological Systems Lab (LaSES) is a world-class lake system research facility at U of I Coeur d'Alene that addresses the pressing social and ecological questions confronting lakes in north Idaho, the region and beyond.
Headed by Idaho Water Resources Research Institute interim director Mark Solomon and research director Frank Wilhelm, professor in the Department of Fish and Wildlife Sciences in U of I College of Natural Resources, the LaSES Lab is designed to conduct research into the function of lake biophysical systems and the relationship of lake function to the communities that use and benefit from lakes.