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EPA Announces Innovative Research in Upper Willamette

Project seeks to improve nitrate management

Contact Information: 
Bill Dunbar (

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                       CONTACT:           Bill Dunbar
August 22, 2017                                                                                                                        206-553-1019


EPA Announces Innovative Research in Upper Willamette

Project seeks to improve nitrate management

(Seattle) Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced research projects addressing priority environmental and human health problems in 20 states through partnerships between EPA’s research office, regional offices, and states.

“EPA encourages the use of innovative scientific approaches to help solve important environmental problems,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “By working with our state partners, we can expand and diversify EPA’s work, engage the public, and foster creative solutions to these challenges.”

The research announced today is designed to address pressing environmental issues faced by the states. EPA is uniquely equipped to provide scientific expertise to help tackle these problems. The selected projects focus on non-point source nitrogen pollution, volatile organic compound emission detection, harmful algal blooms, roadway air pollution near schools, and other environmental and human health issues across the country. The projects will employ innovative approaches including citizen science, crowdsourcing, a challenge competition, and advanced monitoring technologies.

One of these projects is “Is It Working?  Barriers and Incentives to Nutrient Management for Southern Willamette Valley Farmers”. Nitrate contamination of groundwater, including drinking water wells, in Oregon’s southern Willamette Valley has been a growing concern in recent years. As agricultural inputs are a significant source of nitrates, efforts have been underway to measure nitrate leaching from active cropland in the area and share this information with farmers. This project will involve reaching out to these farmers to understand how they are using this information and how it has impacted their decision making. The results will help guide agencies in determining how best to provide information to farmers, create incentives, and remove barriers to improving nutrient management and reducing nitrate leaching to groundwater.

Learn more about this and the other projects here: