Photo: NOAA

Photo: NOAA

January 5 + 6, 2017

This June, Waukesha, Wisconsin, became the first U.S. city outside of the Great Lakes watershed to receive permission to withdraw water under the Great Lakes Compact - a 2008 law that gives states bordering the lakes control over water diversions. While all eight Great Lakes state governors approved Waukesha's request, the city's 13-year-long saga wasn't without controversy. While some see the Compact doing its job and forcing concessions while still offering clean, reliable water to a community in need, others see the Waukesha approval as a slippery slope toward other thirsty cities getting to take a drink. 

IJNR will bring a group of journalists to Waukesha on January 5th and 6th to see how the city will get water from Lake Michigan, treat it and send it back to the basin while also discussing its bigger-picture impacts. Participating journalists will tour water plants; talk with state agencies, elected officials, water authorities and concerned organizations; and discuss what the Waukesha decision may mean for future water requests.

Current confirmed speakers are: 

Shawn Reilly - mayor, Waukesha, WI
Dan Duchniak - general manager, Waukesha Water Utility
Peter Annin - co-director, Burke Center for Freshwater Innovation, Northland University; author, The Great Lakes Water Wars
John Skalbeck - professor, Geosciences, University of Wisconsin-Parkside
Nick Schroeck - director, Transnational Environmental Law Clinic, Wayne State University
David Ullrich - executive director, Great Lakes & St. Lawrence Cities Initiative
Reporters attending the workshop will also hear from state agencies and other Wisconsin elected officials during the workshop.

IJNR will provide meals and lodging (nights of January 5th and 6th) for attendees of the event. 

Journalists from all media platforms and levels of experience are encouraged to register.

There is a $25 registration fee that will cover all lodging and meals during the event. 

Attendance will be capped at 20 participants. 

Please note that staying overnight is not required for reporters within "commuting" distance.

To register: Please send a resume and a clip to We will then send you a link to the registration page.  (This is only to confirm that you are, indeed, a journalist!)