Network to find your water-conscious neighbors

If you’re the only one in your neighborhood with a rain barrel, rain garden, green roof or porous driveway, don’t worry. You’ll never feel alone again.

Rain barrels help collect water from running into the sewer system. Photo: patriotworld (flickr)

Networked Neighbors for Eco-Conservation Online connects you to other water-conscious people in the Great Lakes region. You can map projects around the region, calculate how much water you’re conserving and share pictures of your water conservation efforts.

The site, developed by the Institute of Water Research at Michigan State University, has fostered friendly competition among neighbors who want to see who can save the most water with home projects like rain gardens.

“We know people were doing some neighborhood competition with each other,” said Jeremiah Asher, GIS Project Manager at the institute.

Users can calculate how much water they manage – or prevent from running straight into a nearby stream – and how much pollution they filter every year.

Asher said Networked Neighbors for Eco-Conservation Online is popular with watershed conservation groups that use the site to track and promote their work.

They map and showcase their activities in their watershed, Asher said.

Developers are now promoting the site and adding more social networking and mobile opportunities so users can add projects and pictures on the go.

So if you have a water conservation project you’re itching to share, check out Networked Neighbors.

About Carol Thompson

Carol graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in journalism and environmental studies. She reported for Great Lakes Echo from 2011 to 2012, and now works for the Peninsula Pulse in Door County, Wis. She was an intern at the Leelanau Enterprise and The Daily Green and contributed to EJ Magazine. Contact Carol through email at thomp872@gmail.com or Twitter @thompsoncarolk.

  • William K

    There’s quite a bit going on in the Eastside of Lansing that I didn’t know about, including streets I frequently bike down & garden at. I’ll have to include my gardens!