2012 US Water Prize Winners

Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District
The Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District’s (MMSD) holistic approach to water management works on a watershed level and is a one water model. That’s why the US Water Alliance awarded MMSD a 2012 Water Prize for its cutting-edge Watershed-Based Permitting. The program uses an innovative geography-based approach to discharge permitting. MMSD serves 411 square miles that touches six watersheds. Watershed-Based Permitting extends to the natural boundaries of watersheds rather than being confined to manmade political jurisdictions or industries. Through this pilot program, MMSW is moving towards integrated stormwater permitting programs that focus on overall watershed improvements.

Stewardship by large water users is key to our one water future. PepsiCo received a 2012 US Water Prize for its comprehensive approach to water stewardship, including: watershed preservation, agricultural interventions, responsible use within its operations, and strategic engagement and advocacy. PepsiCo’s water reclamation project at the Casa Grande Snack Facility is a notable example of the company’s efforts. The compact water recovery and recycling facility dramatically reduced the amount of water discharged from the facility by 75 percent; reducing water use by up to 100 million gallons per year.

Philadelphia Water Department
The Philadelphia Water Department’s program Green City, Clean Waters (GCCW) was awarded a 2012 Water Prize for its vision to unite the city with its water environment, creating a green legacy for future generations, while finding a balance between ecology, economics, and equity. GCCW is a holistic approach to urban water resources management that integrates solutions to stormwater management into the socioeconomic fabric of Philadelphia, thereby creating amenities for city residents. The commitment is to “green” more than 34 percent of the combined sewer area’s impervious cover in the coming 25 years.

Project WET Foundation
A one water future will need citizens well educated in water. That’s why the US Water Alliance awarded the Project WET (“Water Education for Teachers”) Foundation its Water Prize in 2012. The nonprofit organization provides training workshops on a wide range of water topics, organizes community water events, and builds a worldwide network of educators, water resource professionals, and scientists to work together on confronting water challenges. Project WET achieves its mission of worldwide water education in part by publishing award‐winning water education materials, including the free, interactive water education website DiscoverWater.org, the Project WET Curriculum and Activity Guide 2.0, the Discover a Watershed series, and the Kids in Discovery series, among others.

Salmon Falls Watershed Collaborative
The Salmon Falls Watershed Collaborative highlights the importance of inter-jurisdictional partnerships to protect and sustain drinking water supplies leading to our one water future. This inter-state collaborative between Maine and New Hampshire received the 2011 US Water Prize for uniting local, state and federal partners to protect forests and reduce stormwater pollution from anticipated development. It is an action-oriented partnership among local, state and federal partners to address increases in polluted runoff resulting from rapid population growth and conversion of forested land to developed areas in the watershed.

San Francisco Public Utilities Commission
When it comes to our one water future the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) is on the cutting edge. Its response to the challenges presented by climate change, aging infrastructure, and regulations is to move toward managing water as one resource. With three enterprises, Water, Power and Sewer, the SFPUC works together to manage and protect its varied water resources as one water and in a manner that is inclusive of environmental and community interests. SFPUC was awarded the US Water Prize in 2011 for implementing the Urban Watershed Management Program, which takes an integrated urban watershed management approach to developing policies that embrace innovation, integration, public participation, and education.