Peterson Joins Governor for Unveiling of H2Ohio Program Protecting Ohio's Water Quality
COLUMBUS—State Senator Bob Peterson
(R-Washington Court House) yesterday joined Governor Mike DeWine in Toledo as the Governor unveiled H2Ohio, a comprehensive, data-driven water quality plan to preserve Ohio’s vital waterways and ensure safe, clean water for all of Ohio’s citizens.
The program focuses on reducing phosphorus and preventing algal blooms, creating wetlands, addressing failing septic systems and preventing lead contamination. The Ohio General Assembly fully-funded the program for the current biennium in the state budget earlier this year.
"H2Ohio represents the hard work of many stakeholders representing the agriculture, conservation, environmental and research communities," said Peterson. "I'm grateful for the Governor's focus and leadership, and I'm proud to be part of the farming community that is working on effective solutions to ensure access to safe water for all Ohioans."
The Senate has worked closely over the last decade with environmental, agricultural and scientific communities to protect Lake Erie and Ohio’s other vital waterways from harmful algae and toxins. In addition to passing funding in the state budget for the H2Ohio program, the Senate unanimously passed Senate Bill 2
this year, sponsored by Senators Bob Peterson and Matt Dolan. Senate Bill 2 would establish a statewide watershed planning and management program to coordinate state and local efforts to improve water quality and meet the unique needs of various regions around the state.
Various leaders in the agricultural, environmental and business communities attended the announcement at the National Museum of the Great Lakes in Toledo. Also joining were Ohio Department of Natural Resources Director Mary Mertz, Department of Agriculture Director Dorothy Pelanda, Ohio Environmental Protection Agency Director Laurie Stevenson and Lake Erie Commission Director Joy Mulinex.
“H2Ohio takes on Ohio’s water quality issues with an aggressive plan of proven solutions. We appreciate Governor DeWine stepping up to provide funding to make the implementation of additional best management practices more economically feasible for farmers as they help achieve the overall goal of clean water across the state,” said Ohio Farm Bureau President Frank Burkett III.
“H2Ohio is a major advancement in the fight to provide all Ohioans with clean, safe, and affordable water,” added Heather Taylor-Miesle, Executive Director of the Ohio Environmental Council. “We look forward to continuing this important work alongside environmental, agricultural, academic and regulatory leaders to develop science-based, forward-thinking solutions that are good for people, good for our environment and good for our economy.”
For additional details about the Governor’s H2Ohio program, visit www.h2.ohio.gov
. To watch yesterday's announcement, visit www.OhioChannel.gov