Citizen Watershed Assessment Program

PEI, a leader in Washington resource management since 1982, is now focusing on watersheds and has developed a plan to help citizens be heard. Citizens who live in watersheds are the ones who best understand the threats and problems these areas face. Their input and participation is essential for developing workable solutions. PEI's Citizen Watershed Assessment Program is designed to help citizens get involved in local watershed planning efforts, using the following approach:

Develop Citizen Watershed Plans

PEI staff works with grassroots citizen groups in small watershed areas to identify their concerns and goals for their watershed. PEI then helps these citizens write a simple plan outlining the history of the area and the threats to watershed health, and helps develop a ranking of the problems to be addressed.

Increase Involvement

PEI identifies the local players in a given Watershed Resource Inventory Area (WRIA), including the conservation district, native groups, nonprofit groups, a lead entity such as a planning unit, and government agencies. PEI can help citizen groups develop relationships with these players and begin voicing their concerns at various public meetings and through the distribution of their watershed plan. These relationships can help begin the process of securing funding and support for restoration and protection projects within the watershed.

Secure Funding

Once watershed projects are identified and prioritized, PEI can help secure funding by assisting with grant writing and administration, and by continuing to develop partnerships with local groups and government.

Implement Projects

By applying PEI's experience in resource conservation to water quality monitoring, riparian restoration, and forest stewardship, PEI helps organize volunteers and begins implementing recommendations of the watershed plan.