Jul 29, 2014
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Loudoun Takes on Public-Private Water Partnership

Loudoun Soil & Water Conservation District teams up with local groups to improve water quality in the Potomac River.

Loudoun Takes on Public-Private Water Partnership

The Loudoun Soil & Water Conservation District is teaming up with the Trump Organization and Algonkian Regional Park for its new Healthy Waters Initiative, a public-private partnership with the goal of improving water quality in the Potomac River and its tributaries, according to a statement about the initiative.

The project, whose goal District Vice Chair Chris Simmons described as developing "sustainable riparian buffers to serve as natural filters in cleaning waterways," is currently in a pilot phase, using the county's 39-mile riverfront for an initial study of how to protect the area and also develop best management practices for it.

Little more than a year into the project, "Healthy Waters already has tentative commitments protecting 19.9 miles of the Potomac River," a news release about the project says. The two main test sites are at Algonkian Regional Park as well as Trump's golf course.

Teams of professors and students from Virginia Tech are using the test sites to develop "Best Management Practices” (BMPs)  to develop "environmental models proven to work [across] the Mid-Atlantic States."

In two years, Healthy Waters aims to expand the project up the Shenandoah River, the "principal tributary of the Potomac," along with area down the Potomac River, while also offering information to other Virginia watersheds.

The Loudoun Soil & Water Conservation created the nonprofit District Healthy Waters Foundation to run the program, according to the release.

“Perhaps the most important lesson of our generation is to realize that our economy is our environment and our environment is our economy," said Ed Russo, Environmental Program Manager for the Trump Organization, in a statement.

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