Pittsburgh, PA - The River Alert Information Network (RAIN), announces a new partner in drinking water protection in Western PA and Northern West Virginia. Penn’s Corner Conservancy Charitable Trust, Inc. (Penn’s Corner), will partner with RAIN to augment its current Early Warning System (EWS) of twenty-nine (29) river monitoring stations designed to identify river pollution in the Upper Ohio Basin. Penn’s Corner is a regionally-focused nonprofit group comprised of urban and rural planners, elected officials, and conservation organizations. Utilizing real-time water quality data, officials can take prompt and appropriate action should a pollution event occur. An immediate response ensures safe and clean drinking water for the entire region. Regional partnerships help secure resources and will maximize RAIN’s fifty-one public water suppliers and partners.
Penn’s Corner will provide both technical advisement and financial sponsorship services for RAIN. “As a promoter and facilitator of partnerships, our organization will identify tools and other resources to help RAIN and its stakeholders meet its goals to protect source water and enhance water quality,” said Penn’s Corner Chair, Doniele Russell. Russell is a land use/greenways planner for Lawrence and Butler Counties. For the past thirty five years, Penn’s Corner’s has partnered with hundreds of communities in the nine county regions aiding in protection and conservation of natural resources.
RAIN recently welcomed Sherene Hess to coordinate source water protection projects and activities for RAIN. Hess brings with her for more than twenty years as an environmental and natural resources protection specialist. She also has a broad range of experience in industrial pollution control, solid waste management, and watershed protection. Hess’ background will be a great benefit to the region.
“Access to clean and safe drinking water is an essential ingredient to healthy, vibrant, and prosperous communities,” said RAIN Chair, Gina Cyprych, a microbiologist with the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority. In Western PA communities, about 2 million residents rely on the Allegheny, Monongahela, Youghiogheny, Shenango, Beaver, and Ohio rivers as their source of drinking water. These mighty rivers also make the region’s industrial and manufacturing strength possible. Industrialization, urban and suburban development can threaten clean water when spills or runoff enter the waters. This threat along with increasing cost of water treatment makes it imperative for our region to rely on innovation and collaboration,” noted Cyprych.
Note: RAIN is in the process of constructing a new website www.rainmatters.org with the expertise of Steelcoast Creative LLC. An announcement will be sent when the site is up and running.