Media Advisory: Public Invitation: April 7 Western South Dakota Hydrology Meeting

Release Date:

Media and the public are invited to attend a free meeting about South Dakota water issues on Thursday, April 7, in Rapid City, South Dakota.

Media and the public are invited to attend a free meeting about South Dakota water issues on Thursday, April 7, in Rapid City, South Dakota. The 14th annual Western South Dakota Hydrology Meeting is an opportunity for reporters, scientists, students and community members to meet and exchange ideas, discuss issues and explore new science related to critical water resources in South Dakota.

The theme for the 2016 meeting is Water, Food, and Energy — Connections, Challenges, and Solutions, and consists of four technical sessions, a poster session with an evening social, a luncheon keynote speaker and several invited keynote presentations. Two optional free field seminars/field trips are also offered to conference attendees on Friday, April 8. The invited luncheon keynote speaker for the John T. Loucks Distinguished Lecture is Dr. James Stone with the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, who will address Food/Energy/Water Nexus Challenges and Potential Solutions for the Northern Great Plains. The John T. Loucks Distinguished Lecture is sponsored by the West Dakota Water Development District.

The conference keynote speakers are:

  • Don Blankenau, Blankenau Wilmoth Jarecke LLP: Interstate Water Litigation: Challenges and Solutions through Present Cases
  • Dr. William Alley, National Groundwater Association: Challenges in Groundwater Assessment for Agriculture and Energy Development
  • Jay Gilbertson, East Dakota Water Development District: South Dakota’s River Basin Natural Resource Districts—Experiment at Water Resource Management

The conference will begin at 8 a.m. on Thursday, April 7, at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center. The poster session and evening social will be from 5 to 7 p.m. The conference is free for media, the public and students, with an optional $20 lunch. Professional registration fee is $100. For professionals who wish to obtain credit for professional development, credits are available for technical sessions attended. All attendees are asked to register before April 1 by visiting the conference website or by contacting Janet Carter at 605-394-3215.

The following optional free field seminars/field trips will be offered on April 8 to conference attendees:

  • Tour of the new Rapid City Water Treatment Facility and Cleghorn Springs Fish Hatchery
  • Walking tour of 1972 flood area 

The annual conference typically draws more than 350 attendees. The preliminary 2016 program is available on the conference website.

The conference is organized by the U.S. Geological Survey, National Weather Service, RESPEC, South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology and West Dakota Water Development District.

For additional information about USGS water resources studies in South Dakota, visit the USGS South Dakota Water Science Center.