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Cooperative Extension hosts Best Management Practices workshops

Posted 3/28/2014

Lake Tahoe

Properly installed best management practices can help prevent polluted runoff from reaching the lake, even during heavy thundershowers.

Courses teach landscaping and land-management practices to protect Lake Tahoe water quality

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension will hold the 15th annual Best Management Practices workshops for contractors and landscape designers April 17 and 18 at Sierra Nevada College in Incline Village. The half-day refresher course will be 8 a.m. to noon on April 17, and the full-day basic workshop will be 8 a.m. to 4:50 p.m. on April 18.

"Best Management Practices are land-management and landscaping practices that control erosion and encourage runoff from rooftops and pavement to infiltrate into the ground," John Cobourn, Cooperative Extension water resources specialist, said. "These practices are required at Lake Tahoe, because they reduce the amount of muddy runoff that flows into the lake during rainstorms."

Cobourn, along with speakers from the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, the Nevada Tahoe Conservation District and the United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service, will explain the basics of proper installation of the practices around homes and small businesses.

This year’s workshops will include presentations on two new Best Management Practices site design options developed by the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency. These options will provide alternative ways to evaluate a property and create a site design, as the planning agency and the conservation districts may not be able to provide as many free Best Management Practices site evaluations in the future as they have in the past.

Businesses that install the Best Management Practices are listed on an installation service providers list as long as at least one employee attends and passes the course every two years. The Service Providers List is available on the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency website, www.tahoebmp.org.

Since the workshops began in 2000, more than 1,800 contractors and landscape designers have benefitted from the trainings. The number of businesses advertising Best Management Practices installation in Lake Tahoe also increased.

Early registration fees for the workshops are $25 for the Basic Workshop and $18 for the Refresher Course. These rates go up after March 31. Registration includes workshop materials, Cooperative Extension’s Home Landscaping Guide for Lake Tahoe and Vicinity and the 2012 Natural Resources Conservation Service’s booklet of Standard Drawings of Residential Scale BMPs. To register, go to www.unce.unr.edu/adhoc/bmpworkshop. For more information, call University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, 775-784-4848. Persons in need of special accommodations or assistance should call at least three days prior to the scheduled event.

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