By Raven Lawson and Bryan Rupar, Central Arkansas Water (Little Rock, Arkansas)

Presented on December 19, 2023


Abstract: Central Arkansas Water’s (CAW) Watershed Protection Program (Program) has received international recognition as a leader of innovative approaches to managing natural resources for the purpose of drinking water protection. The Program’s goals are to protect, restore, and enhance the natural watershed environment of their two water sources through a variety of pollution prevention, watershed, and source water protection approaches; part of an overall utility strategy to maintain and enhance ecological and community sustainability.

This webinar will focus on the Program’s fifteen-year history and their approach to watershed-scale conservation through acquisition and forested land management practices. The presentation will showcase how active forest management plays a role in the protection of drinking water sources and will highlight how CAW’s Program has built internal and external capacity to take their acres of forests treated with prescribed fire from a decades-long yearly average of about 350 acres to over 2,500 acres, while also covering the correlation of ecological timber thinning and unpaved roads management to drinking water quality.