Lafayette, IN

Wabash River Enhancement Corporation (WREC)

WATERSHED: Wabash River Watershed

Community Engagement Improves Water Quality on the Wabash

The Wabash River Enhancement Corporation (WREC) partners with residents, commercial and industrial entities, local and regional governments, local civic and environmental organizations, and others to protect and improve water quality within the Wabash River watershed. Through initiatives such as the Paint the Rain rain barrel program, Wabash Riverfest, TippEcoNow, and the Wabash Sampling Blitz, WREC works to remove the social, economic, and technical barriers that prevent people from adopting practices that improve the quality of the water in the Wabash.

WREC has measurably increased residents’ perception of how the river impacts the local economy and how it contributes to community identity, while increasing technical knowledge about best practices like rain gardens and pervious pavement. By helping local residents understand how the ways they improve and beautify their own neighborhoods, homes, and workplaces are connected to the health of the watershed, WREC believes residents will be more likely to spread this knowledge within their own personal networks.

To expand WREC’s impact and cultivate the next generation of stewards, WREC has provided over 265 Purdue University students with opportunities for service learning through 12 unique courses in partnership with Purdue faculty.

WREC’s efforts have reduced loads of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment loads to the Wabash River by thousands of tons a year. They also prevent nearly 99.5 million gallons of stormwater from entering the river, which saves nearly $3.4 billion in future sediment removal and stormwater treatment costs.

Learn more about how WREC is helping to restore the Wabash River. [Will link to WREC Impact Story once published]