Our next Seattle Speaker Series will be a joint event with American Water Resources Association (AWRA).
Title: Water Banking in Washington State: Past, Present, and Future
Speaker: Greg McLaughlin, Senior Program Manager – Washington Water Trust and Chris Czarnecki, Investment and Partnerships Officer – Washington Water trust.
Location: Optimism Brewing 1158 Broadway, Seattle, WA 98122
“Water Banking” is a term that means many things to many people in the State of Washington. Over the past 20 years, this water resource management tool has helped water resource professionals plan for the future, delivering benefits to flow limited streams as it also supports agricultural demands and growing communities. WWT will provide case studies from their experience implementing water banks in the Walla Walla, Upper Yakima, and Dungeness basins. Lessons learned from these experiences provide valuable information that can be used to support future efforts to utilize these tools in the rapidly-evolving water needs in basins across the State. Discussion will include opportunities, challenges, and limitations of previous efforts, as well as a discussion on recommendations for future us of Water Banking as a water resource management tool.
Greg McLaughlin is a Senior Program Manager for WWT. He joined the Washington Water Trust in 2006, continuing a career that has emphasized the development of collaborative, locally-driven conservation projects. At the Natural Resources Conservation Service in Fort Collins, CO, Greg worked alongside agricultural producers to help improve irrigation systems and farm operations via cooperative conservation projects protecting soil, water, and wildlife. As a Peace Corps Volunteer in rural Thailand, he pioneered projects in community forestry, ecotourism, and village handicrafts that promoted resources conservation while also rebuilding local economies. Greg also initiated sustainable land use management pilot projects in Colorado, worked as an environmental planner in rural Missouri, and published research on public participation processes and local solutions to large carnivore conflicts in the Greater Yellowstone region. He has a degree in biology from The Colorado College and an M.S. in Environmental Management with an emphasis on Social Ecology and Community Development from the Yale School of Forestry and Natural Resources.
Chris Czarnecki is an Investment and Partnerships Officer for WWT. He joined the Washington Water Trust in 2019 with a desire to protect Washington's freshwater resources and the fish that he loves to pursue with a fly rod during his free time. He graduated in 2007 with a B.A. in English Literature from Wake Forest University in his hometown of Winston-Salem, NC. Since then he has worked for conservation non-profits in Alaska, Nepal, Washington DC and Seattle including eight years of experience with organizations focused on biodiversity conservation and sustainable community development in the mountains of central and south Asia. Most recently, he worked for the Snow Leopard Trust where he served as Government Grants Manager and Project Manager on a Global Environment Facility and United Nations funded project focused on transboundary snow leopard conservation. In addition to fly-fishing in his free time, he enjoys trail running, skiing, paddle-boarding and various hobbies he passionately dives into with middling results.