HELENA, Mont. – Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins is joining mayors across the country asking residents to make a commitment to reduce pollution and manage water resources more wisely. The Wyland Foundation National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation runs April 1-30 and encourages residents and businesses to take the pledge and track standings at mywaterpledge.com.
With Montana in continued drought, and the Helena area in extreme drought, the City of Helena encourages people to not only plan now for the potentially dry summer ahead, but also for the future as these dry years become more frequent.
To participate in the challenge, residents can go online and make pledges to conserve water, reduce pollution, and save energy. The City of Helena will compete against other cities in the 30,000-99,999-population category.
Winning cities will be those with the highest percentage of residents who take the challenge in their population category. Cities and their residents will have a chance to win hundreds of prizes, including $3,000 towards home utility bills, hundreds of eco-friendly prizes including Toro Irrigation Smart Controllers, gift cards, and more. In addition, residents of winning cities can nominate a deserving charity to receive a 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid. Students and teachers are encouraged to take part.
The annual challenge is a non-profit national community service campaign started ten years ago by a handful of mayors looking for alternative ways to engage their residents about the water challenges facing the United States.
“The City of Helena’s decision to participate in the National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation is more than a response to a few dry years, it is a demonstration that we value conserving our natural resources and is another step in progressing our city towards a sustainable future,” said Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins.
Last year, residents from over 2,000 cities in all 50 U.S. states pledged to reduce their annual consumption of freshwater by over 3 billion gallons, reduce waste sent to landfills by 80 million pounds, and prevent hundreds of thousands of pounds of hazardous waste from entering our watersheds. The Challenge goes beyond short-term issues and looks at the ways our water use will affect the future of our communities - from how we manage coasts, lakes, and rivers, to reducing polluted runoff.
“We want Helena to be a leader in water conservation and waste reduction, and I encourage all residents to go online and take this pledge,” continued Collins.
The foundation has also created a new digital tool called My Volunteer Water Project. It gives residents a unique way to do hands-on home, community, and workplace projects year-round in support of their city’s sustainability efforts. The more projects residents do throughout the year, the better chance for a city to win the Mayor’s Challenge in April.
The National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation is presented by the Wyland Foundation, with support from Toyota, the U.S. EPA WaterSense, the Toro Company, and National League of Cities.
About the Wyland Foundation
Founded in 1993, the Wyland Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to promoting, protecting, and preserving the world’s ocean, waterways, and marine life. The foundation encourages environmental awareness through community events, education programs, and public art projects.