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MMSD & Partners Announce One Water, Our Water Initiative

06/28/21 12:30:pm

Just in time for Clean Beaches Week, the One Water, Our Water initiative Encourages Residents to Get Involved With Protecting Our Water

(Milwaukee, WI) -  Milwaukee regional agencies and organizations focused on water quality have come together to partner on the One Water, Our Water initiative.

In southeast Wisconsin, communities benefit from the abundance of freshwater flowing throughout the region. From the rivers, creeks, and streams, to Lake Michigan – the source of drinking water for millions of people, this water supply belongs to everyone, and every community member can play a role in keeping this precious resource clean and safe, where they live, work, learn and play.

Milwaukee is equally fortunate to have many organizations and agencies in the region working together to protect this vital resource—Our Water. Over 15 organizations with a long history of partnering to protect our waterways and Lake Michigan have now come together to create Milwaukee’s One Water - Our Water initiative.

The One Water approach, developed by the US Water Alliance, “envisions managing all water in an integrated, inclusive, and sustainable manner to secure a bright, prosperous future for our children, our communities, and our country.”  The approach is built on the belief that all water—drinking water, wastewater, stormwater, grey water, and more—must be managed holistically and sustainably. Doing so builds strong economies, vibrant communities, and healthy environments.

one water our water logo

“The Milwaukee area is fortunate to have plentiful water in Lake Michigan. But we need to take steps to preserve this resource.  We need action throughout the watersheds in cities and in rural areas that reduce our impact.  This is essential for our children’s future,” said Kevin Shafer, Executive Director, Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District.

The Milwaukee team built on the US Water Alliance approach and developed an initiative that celebrates the ways we interact with this amazing resource that is right outside our door.

 “We are so lucky to have three amazing rivers and one of our greatest lakes in Milwaukee, and it’s important that we continue to work together to ensure that our waters are clean and safe, and that there is equitable access to our water for everyone in our community,” said Cheryl Nenn, Riverkeeper at Milwaukee Riverkeeper.

Together, groups hope the campaign will inspire community members to find new ways to care for their local waterways and get involved with a variety of organizations and agencies working to protect them.  To learn more visit:

The Milwaukee initiative features everyday Milwaukeeans working to create change in their neighborhoods. One such Milwaukeean is the former U.S. Consul General in Toronto, Juan Alsace.  Alsace chose to relocate to Milwaukee upon his retirement, making it his mission to find ways to care for our waters as a civilian.

“The Great Lakes have contributed to–-and continue to play-– a critical role in the economic well-being of our nation through the transport of goods, fisheries, and tourism.  The Lakes are job creators, so keeping the waters clean and healthy is not only good for our health and the environment, it makes economic sense as well,” said Alsace.


Learn more about One Water, Our Water by visiting their website.

One Water, Our Water Partners:

The One Water, Our Water initiative is led by over 17 organizations working together to create awareness of how water intersects with every aspect of life and move individuals to take action to protect our water.

Questions about the One Water, Our Water initiative?

Contact: Christina Taddy,  Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District

414-319-2304 |