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Education & Outreach
The Water Conservation Office offers the following programs to the public about ways to conserve water supplies. Call (505) 896-8715 for more details or to schedule a program.

Would your class or group like an interactive and fun presentation?  Water Conservation Office and Environmental Programs can tailor activities to your application, whether it is Girl Scout or Boy Scout badges, a particular unit on water in the classroom, or even just something different and fun.

Science Fairs and Expos
Rio Rancho students participate in the middle school and high school science fairs each year.  The Water Conservation Office supports the scientific endeavors of the students and funds an award “Every Drop Counts”.  This award is for the best display of water conservation, water efficiency or water quality.  “Water education for children makes for a smarter water future for Rio Rancho,” said Marian Wrage, who heads up the city’s Environmental Programs.

The sixth annual “Every Drop Counts” award was presented to Hanna Harper for her project called "#WaterProbs". 

Ms. Harper’s project was to further support that invertebrates are highly sensitive to pollutants.  Invertebrates are animals that have no backbone or spinal column, such as insects, worms, jellyfish, starfish, and snails.  This year, in addition to Nitrates, she tested to see if ammonia, phosphates, or pH affected invertebrates.  pH and ammonia both seemed to yield no affect, but the phosphates and nitrates both had high Pearson’s correlation number which conveys that they have negative consequences on invertebrates.  Hanna performed conductivity and total dissolved solid tests to solidify and confirm her results.  She sampled the invertebrates using a bio survey.  The closer the pollutants came to 5 parts per million (ppm) concentration in the water the more potent they appeared to be.  In this phase II experiment, the nitrate correlation number increased from -0.7 to -0.9, which illustrates that invertebrate populations are not only affected by pollutants, but these pollutants will eventually increase to a point where they cannot survive.  If there was more water in the river to dilute the chemicals this could potentially solve the issue.

Hanna Harper

Hanna Harper from Rio Rancho High School.

If you are a student or know a student who needs mentoring for the science expos, contact us for assistance and guidance (505) 896-8715.

Water Festival T-shirt Artwork

Rio Rancho Children's Water Festival
Water education at the elementary school level is an important component of the water conservation initiative for the City of Rio Rancho in order to create a sustainable water supply by improving water use efficiency by its citizens, encouraging water management, and promoting water conservation.  Rio Rancho has approximately 1,400 fourth grade students.  Most of these students receive little or no formal water resource education. The Rio Rancho Children’s Water Festival improves the understanding of good water management principles by the students, teachers and parents who participate in this festival.  The 2014 Festival reached 1,487 students, 100% of Rio Rancho fourth grade students and teachers, one school in the Town of Bernalillo, and one school in Jemez Valley through this annual two-day event.  Our sponsors this year include: CH2M Hill, Sandoval County, Waste Management, PNM, Intel, Rocky Mountain Section of the American Water Works Association, Rio Rancho Community Foundation, Bank of Albuquerque, and NCS Engineers.The principal focus of the Festival is to educate fourth grade school children about water and its relationship to human and other natural resources in a fun and interactive atmosphere.  The program vision is to:

Introduce students and teachers to new ideas, options and solutions so they will conserve and protect water for the future,
- Lay the foundation for further learning,
- Reach as many students and teachers as possible

The Festival has been designed specifically to introduce and explain new and unfamiliar water management tools to the present and future water users and managers.  Research concerning water conservation education indicates the targeted group of the Festival, fourth grade students, is ideal for achieving long-term goals.  Through sharing at home and with extended family, the expected 1,400 participants represent an ultimate audience of 10,000 to 15,000 people throughout the Festival program.


2014 Sponsors

Adult outreach includes:
  • Water with the Seasons and the Weather watering guide.
  • Xeriscape landscape and water conservation printed materials.
  • Water Wise Demonstration Garden next to Esther Bone Memorial Library at 950 Pinetree Road. 
    • The garden is a beautiful, living example of water wise and xeriscape principles and techniques.