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ACWA Water Monitoring Opportunity

Farmers: ACWA water monitoring opportunity

Agriculture’s Clean Water Alliance (ACWA), a group of ag retailers in the Des Moines and Raccoon River watersheds, is seeking farmers to participate in its tile water monitoring program from April through September. 

“This is a great way for farmers to learn more about their operation and gain an understanding of water quality of their tile water,” said Roger Wolf, executive director of ACWA. “Using the results, we can verify current practices and water quality, document their conditions relative to aggregate data and, if warranted, offer suggestions to reduce nutrient loss.”

ACWA’s goal is to build on the current monitoring program of 108 sites by adding approximately 50 new sites starting in April 2017. Staff working for ACWA will collect eight water samples between April and September. The samples will be tested for nitrate-N as well as ortho-phosphorus. ACWA will provide the participant with regular reports, as well as a comprehensive annual report with the year’s results and guidance on possible opportunities to improve. 

Data collected as part of this program is confidential. All participants must sign a monitoring agreement and they must provide management data for the field being monitored, such as crop rotations, fertilizer applications, yield, etc. The sample sites must be in the Raccoon or Des Moines River watersheds, see map of eligible areas.  

ACWA will work with farmers to identify appropriate monitoring sites, but farmers should consider the following when selecting a potential site:
Easy access to the outlet 
Tile drains one field
Outlet to the stream isn’t submerged and doesn’t submerge with heavy rains

ACWA is contracting with the Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) to conduct the monitoring, complete analysis of water samples at ISA’s accredited water quality laboratory and compile reports. For more information or to sign-up, contact Tony Seeman at or 515-334-1042.