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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: THE HELP (HYDROLOGY FOR THE ENVIRONMENT, LIFE AND POLICY) EXPERIENCE IN NORTH AMERICA 1781)

Author
item Goodrich, David - Dave
item Stakhiv, E.
item Browning-aiken, A.
item Vache, E.
item Ortiz-zayas, J.
item Blanco, J.
item Scatena, F.
item Varady, R.
item Bowden, W.
item Howland, W.

Submitted to: American Society Of Civil Engineers Watershed Management Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/1/2004
Publication Date: 7/1/2005
Citation: Goodrich, D.C., Stakhiv, E.Z., Browning-Aiken, A., Vache, E., Ortiz-Zayas, J.R., Blanco, J.F., Scatena, F.N., Varady, R.G., Bowden, W.B., Howland, W. 2005. The HELP (Hydrology for the Environment, Life and Policy) Experience in North America. Proc. ASCE Watershed Manage. Conf., July 19-22, Williamsburg, VA., 12p., CD-ROM.

Interpretive Summary: Many in the international water community stress the importance of integrated water resources management as the most effective means of sustaining economic and social welfare while protecting the health of vital ecosystems. One reaction to this call for more effective management has been the Hydrology for the Environment, Life and Policy (HELP) initiative. HELP is a joint initiative of UNESCO and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). HELP attempts to addresses the traditional separation between water policy, water resource management and scientific communities, especially in terms of setting of research agendas and the free flow of information for use in management. Its primary goals are: (1) Establish a global network of HELP basins with operational links between research scientists and policymakers; (2) Direct hydrological science toward integrated basin policy and management; (3) Provide opportunities to learn lessons from other basins; and, (4) Promote social and economic well-being of stakeholders via sustainable use of water as an ecological resource. This has resulted in 11 HELP basins within North America which are in different stages of scientist/policy integration. Five of the 11 North American HELP basins are described in greater detail in this study including an assessment of their ss their current relationship to the HELP program.

Technical Abstract: HELP (Hydrology for the Environment, Life, and Policy) is a joint initiative of UNESCO and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Its primary goals are: (1) Establish a global network of HELP basins with operational links between research scientists and policymakers; (2) Direct hydrological science toward integrated basin policy and management; (3) Provide opportunities to learn lessons from other basins; and, (4) Promote social and economic well-being of stakeholders via sustainable use of water as an ecological resource. With these goals, scientists, managers, policy experts, and other stakeholders within HELP watersheds address locally defined water-related issues, including water and climate; water and food; water quality and human health; water and environment; and water and conflict. Recently in North America there has been momentum towards grassroots watershed management organizations. Such organizations attempt to coordinate management programs, relying on bottom-up public participation and NGO involvement, of the various fragmented water management institutions in a given basin (regulatory agencies, planning commissions, development agencies, municipalities, etc.). This has resulted in 11 HELP basins within North America which are in different stages of scientist/policy integration. Five of the 11 North American HELP basins are described in greater detail in this study including an assessment of their ss their current relationship to the HELP program.

Last Modified: 8/24/2016
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