Wednesday, November 7, 2018 from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM EST
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The Crown and The Crow 
1317 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20005

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Women's Aquatic Network (WAN) 
Women's Aquatic Network 

Reflecting on the Value of Water

What is the true value of water? Water surrounds us all, but it is difficult to understand just how much water means to us. How do we put a value on being able to turn on the tap and have fresh, clean water flow? What about running into a sparkling ocean at your favorite beach? Or enjoying a freshly brewed cup of coffee?

As WAN members, supporters, and partners we know that the true value of water often goes unrecognized and that our water resources are threatened. In fact, most of us spend our day jobs working on these very issues! From marine debris to fisheries, restoring habitats around national parks, coastal rehabilitation and resiliency efforts, and even improving the way we convey and treat our stormwater, WAN members are on the forefront of addressing the most pressing water issues of our time.

The concept of One Water is gaining prominence within the water utility sector. In essence, One Water is a recognition that all water is interconnected, has value, and that the management of water should maximize and protect that value. One Water brings forth the interconnection of Earth’s water systems, noting that water is continuously being recycled and reused. One Water is breaking down silos within the water/wastewater utility sector, and between utilities and all the other important agencies and aspects of the water sector.

One Water also includes greater recognition of the connection between freshwater and marine environments. Marine and estuarine environments are impacted by the quality of freshwater flowing in; groundwater is impacted by saltwater intrusion. The list goes on -- our vital water resources are all connected and to ensure sustainable management, we must manage them holistically.
Expanding the WAN Watershed

This viewpoint is something WAN is increasingly looking to reflect on among our membership. WAN membership has historically been very strong in the marine sector. We see an opportunity to strengthen professional connections with the freshwater world — both for members’ professional development and to help influence collaboration in all of our work in the marine and freshwater sectors!

In June 2017 WAN hosted a special event at Capitol Hill Oceans Week (CHOW), A Watershed Moment. With speakers from the National Wildlife Federation, Coastal States Organization, National Association of Clean Water Agencies, and Capitol Hill, we brought together the freshwater and marine sectors to discuss how we can better work together toward shared goals of protecting and responsibly managing water. This was the first of several targeted events WAN is taking on to increase connections across the water cycle and promote collaboration.

Get Involved!

On October 10th, 2018, WAN joined thousands of other organizations around the country for Imagine a Day Without Water, hosted by the Value of Water Coalition and coordinated by the US Water Alliance. We kicked off a month-long WAN Photo Contest in celebration of this event and all things water. Don’t forget to take part! Participation is fast and easy. Snap a shot showing what water means to you and upload it to Facebook or other social media with the #WANPhotoContest and#ValueWater hashtags!

We are excited to continue this conversation at the WAN Value of Water Happy Hour, with a One Water theme on November 7th. Join colleagues from the water utility, freshwater, marine, coastal, and ocean sectors. Network across the water cycle. Hear from a special guest of the Value of Water Coalition, WAN Board Members, and the US Water Alliance.
Hope to see you there!