River Restoration “How-To” Meetings Slated for Southwest Iowa

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A series of meetings have been set on natural river restoration for farmers, landowners and others on tactics for reducing erosion, pollution and flooding, and improving habitat and recreation.

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For immediate release — June 5, 2015
Contact — Lance Brisbois, Golden Hills RC&D, 712-482-3029, lance@goldenhillsrcd.org

Oakland, Iowa – Iowa Rivers Revival is collaborating with Golden Hills RC&D to host a series of meetings across Southwest Iowa that will provide an introduction to natural river restoration benefits and practices.  Landowners, farmers, conservationists, educators, and the public are invited to the free informational meetings.

The presentations will focus on the West Nishnabotna River, but will have relevant information for other streams in the region.  John Thomas, Project Director of the Hungry Canyons Alliance, will lead the presentations.  The meetings and Q&A will last approximately one hour.

Natural river restoration provides many benefits to landowners and surrounding community.  It:

* Offers affordable and sustainable options to reduce streambank erosion.
* Improves water quality by reducing sediment and nutrient loading into the stream.
* Reduces flooding and flood effects.
* Protects local infrastructure such as bridges and roads from erosion and flooding, and reduces taxpayer expense to repair, replace and maintain.
* Enhances aquatic and riparian wildlife habitat and ecosystem.
* Improves river recreation, fishing, and hunting – boosting local economies and providing public health and quality of life.

Iowa now lacks the resources and expertise to offer natural river restoration opportunities to landowners and communities across Iowa.  An Iowa River Restoration Program (comparable to the Iowa Lakes Restoration Program) would provide guidelines, criteria, funding, training, and expertise necessary to offer cost-share opportunities for protecting Iowa’s landscape, streambanks and riverways.

The Southwest Iowa meetings provide an opportunity to learn and discuss the benefits and techniques of natural river restoration.  More information about the meetings can be found at www.westnishwatertrail.weebly.com/river-restoration.

Iowa Rivers Revival is a non-profit organization dedicated to river education and advocacy. IRR is committed to protecting some of Iowa’s most precious natural resources – our rivers and streams.  IRR engages individuals, organizations, communities, and government leaders in river awareness, responsibility, and enjoyment in an effort to improve and enhance the condition of Iowa waterways and ensure a quality, safe and lasting resource for future generations.

Golden Hills RC&D (Resource Conservation & Development) is a non-profit organization dedicated to sustainable use and protection of natural resources for the economic and social betterment of the people of western Iowa.  By collaborating on these presentations, IRR and Golden Hills hope to build awareness and support for natural river restoration activities in Southwest Iowa, and protect valuable Loess soils and river resources.

The times and locations of the meetings are:

* Monday, June 8, 10:30am – Exira Public Library – 114 W Washington St., Exira
*Wednesday, June 10, 1pm – Hamburg City Hall – 1005 Bluff St., Hamburg
* Thursday, June 11, 10:30am – Shenandoah Public Library – 201 S Elm St., Shenandoah
* Monday, June 15, 2pm – IWCC Cass County Campus – 705 Walnut St, Atlantic
* Tuesday, June 16, 10:30am –ISU Extension Office – 400 Bridge St., Red Oak
* Wednesday, June 17, 2pm – Harlan Public Library – 718 Court St. Harlan
* Thursday, June 18, 3pm – Council Bluffs Public Library (Meeting Room A) – 400 Willow Ave., Council Bluffs
* Wednesday, June 24, 2pm – Malvern Public Library – 502 Main St., Malvern
* Thursday, June 25, 5pm– Oakland Community Center – 614 Dr. Van Zee Rd., Oakland

If you have any questions about these presentations, please contact Lance Brisbois at Golden Hills RC&D or Rosalyn Lehman at Iowa Rivers Revival.

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