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Kansas Center for Agricultural Resources and the Environment (KCARE)

About the Watershed Research and Implementation Partnership (WRIP)

On the right, a polluted stream. On the left, Big Creek's water is brown with siltation. Water sample jars are lined up.Twenty years ago, state regulatory agencies calculated that excessive pollutants like bacteria, pesticides and nutrients impaired 80% of Kansas waterways and 86% of lakes and reservoirs. In response, Kansas State University accepted the challenge and created the Watershed Research and Implementation Partnership (WRIP), an initiative as wide-ranging as the problem it seeks to resolve: restoring and protecting Kansas’ impaired agricultural watersheds.watershed specialists demonstrate how to set up a tire tank

It's a comprehensive program with substantial goals. WRIP was designed as a science-based and stakeholder-driven program resulting in sustainable environmental stewardship for Kansas water through research, education and implementation of best management practices (BMPs). We created an interdisciplinary program providing producers and landowners with outreach, financial assistance, and the most current research on watershed modeling, economic analysis, GIS mapping, and agricultural technologies. WRIP works hand-in hand with residents in high-priority basins to educate and implement BMPs to significantly improve Kansas water quality.

Smart projects support healthy watersheds

series of photos depicting the installation of a well pump and two solar panels on an existing windmill tower. The final product is a circular metal tank, filled with waterclick on the graphic to see a larger version

In the news

KCARE watershed specialist Will Boyer shared his views on how unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) can play a role in helping farmers monitor their pastures. Read more about how this technology identifies biomass and how producers can use this information.

Tune in to Agriculture Today and learn more about how KCARE watershed specialists help producers safeguard water quality in Kansas. If you don't want to listen to the whole program, skip ahead to 00:12:00.


One of our KCARE watershed specialists, Ron Graber, was a featured presenter in a recent EPA Water Finance Webinar. Along with experts from the City of Boise, Idaho and the Miami Conservancy District in Florida, Ron discussed how watersheds can benefit when municipal water treatment plants invest in conservation practices on nearby farms. This type of urban-rural partnership is an important way to identify alternatives for improving water quality and watershed health.

Our partners make the difference

WRIP includes partners from every stakeholder group: from national organizations to local citizens. Developed and led by university research and extension specialists at K-State, the program provides unique opportunities for participants to be vested in sustainable water quality. Creating relationships through trust and time, this partnership has significantly impacted Kansas water quality. With 20 years invested in this initiative, we are proud to empower citizens at every level to take decisive actions for sustainable water quality improvements across Kansas.

Examples of our partners are included below. If you or your organization are interested in joining us in our work to improve the quality of Kansas water, please contact us. We are glad to hear from you!

city of hays logopomona wraps logotwin lakes wraps logoBig Creek Middle Smoky Hill River watershed logo
city of Wichita logoKansas department of health and environment logoKansas State research and extension logoFlickner Innovation Farm logo
reno county conservation district logonational resources conservation service logoepa sealkansas water office logo