Registration Open for Ohio River Basin Alliance Summit

November 17-18, 2022 at Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia

By David E. Hess | PA Environment Digest Blog | October 3, 2022

Registration is now open for the 2022 Ohio River Basin Alliance Summit to be held on November 17-18 at Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia.

Hear about the progress made toward implementation of the Plan for the Ohio River Basin 2020 – 2025 and next steps where your help is critical. 

Enjoy the unique opportunity to network with the Ohio River Basin’s water resource experts and leaders.

November 17

Working Group leaders will report on their progress and next steps implementing the Plan for the Ohio River Basin 2020 – 2025 across six goals:

— Abundant clean water

— Healthy and productive ecosystems

— Knowledge and education to inform decisions

— Nation’s most valuable river transportation and commerce corridor

— Reliable flood risk management

— World-class nature-based recreation opportunities

Attendees will hear a keynote address from Appalachian Regional Commission Federal Co-Chair Gayle Manchin (invited) on the Appalachia Envisioned strategy for sustainable economic growth in the heart of the Ohio River Basin. 

With a new strategy and substantial new funding for multi-state initiatives, ARC’s success directly addresses many economic-related priorities for much of the Ohio River Basin.

The ARC talk will be followed by a presentation from Mr. Jordan Lubetkin, National Wildlife Federation Director of Ohio River Restoration, on the status of work toward an Ohio River Restoration Initiative (ORRI). 

The next six months will see the ecological restoration plan completed and advocacy begin for an ORRI comparable to the multi-billion dollar Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

The afternoon of November 17th will include two panel discussions, and an update on the Basin-wide GIS initiative.  

The first panel will engage representatives from federal agencies and a commission on their visions for partnering on ORRI efforts in the Ohio River Basin. 

The panel will include: Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission (Richard Harrison); US Geological Survey (Pete Cinotto); US Army Corps of Engineers (Dan Linkowski); National Park Service (Stephan Nofield [invited]). 

Representatives from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and US Fish & Wildlife Service are also invited.

The second panel discussion will focus on economic development initiatives in the Ohio River Basin. 

Waterborne commerce, water-related recreation and tourism, a restoration economy, and the Basin’s water wealth all provide potential for expanding industries and creating good jobs in the Basin. 

How do we collaborate to realize this potential? What are the barriers and how can they be overcome? This panel will include:

— Dr. Lilit Yeghiazarian, University of Cincinnati

— Sally Gutierrez, USEPA

— Brad Smith, Marshall University

— Jim Sinnette, Appalachian Regional Commission

— Harry Stone, ORBA

The events of Thursday will be capped off with a reception and networking opportunity to be held on the Marshall University campus for all attendees.

November 18

November 18 will kick off with presentations from members of the Ohio River Basin Congressional Delegations followed by a question and answer session with attendees.

Later that morning, we will hear a talk on social justice and diversity, equity and inclusion accountability (DEIA) efforts being undertaken as part of the ORBA vision for the Ohio River Basin. 

Prioritizing the needs and vulnerabilities of at-risk, low-income or underserved communities is an overarching focus for implementation of the Plan for the Ohio River Basin.

The summit events will close at noon on November 18th.

Click Here to register for the Summit.  

For more information, visit the Ohio River Basin Alliance webpage or Facebook page.   Click Here to sign up for email updates.

Questions should be directed to Harry Stone, Chair of the Ohio River Basin Alliance: hstone@orsanco.org 

[Posted: October 3, 2022]  PA Environment Digest | Source

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