Restoring, protecting, and preserving our precious water resource requires the commitment and active involvement of citizens, state, federal and local agencies, and local organizations and groups? Individuals, agencies, organizations and groups all contribute to the care of our water resource in many different ways.
At the federal level, the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administers the Clean Water Act and other laws related to water while one of the primary missions of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers is environmental protection of water resources. The USDA-Natural Resource Conservation Service, Osage Valley RC&D Council administers watershed projects and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) serves in disaster preparedness, including water related disasters.
At the state level, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) is responsible for regulating water quality in Missouri, and the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), through its involvement with the Missouri Stream Teams program and many other community services works to educate and involve the community in protecting water quality. The Missouri Master Naturalist program, sponsored by the MDC and the University of Missouri Extension, engages Missourians in the stewardship of the state’s natural resources through volunteer actions.
Locally, the Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) provides a leadership role including water quality issues in the nine-county region of the Kansas City metropolitan area. The mission of the not-for-profit company, Watershed Institute and Land Trust, is to protect natural resources. The Cass County Soil and Water Conservation District administers soil and water quality programs and encourages protection of these resources. Wastewater treatment planning is a focus of the local Little Blue Valley Sewer District (Middle Big Creek Sewer Subdistrict).
Quail Unlimited is a national organization with effective local programs that provide help to private landowners who create and maintain quail habitat. Good quail habitat also protects and restores water quality. Preserving Missouri prairie is the goal of the Missouri Prairie Foundation. Prairies and prairie plantings serve as nature’s filtering system for stormwater runoff.
The Cass County Sustainability Committee works to promote choices for sustainable use of our resources. The Little Blue River Watershed Coalition and the South Grand River Watershed Alliance are two local groups that provide education and raise awareness about the need for citizens and elected officials to be involved in protecting, restoring and preserving our water resources.