Protecting Our Regional Drinking Water with IWAC

A Backflow Prevention PSA Series

June 14, 2021 by Greta

The Spokane Valley-Rathdrum Prairie Aquifer is a serious point of pride here in our region, boasting pure and clean, naturally sourced water for hundreds of thousands of Washington and Idaho residents. This gem of a resource is generally appreciated all around, but like many great things, it can easily be taken for granted. The regional nonprofit Idaho Washington Aquifer Collaborative (IWAC) works to bring purveyors of water utilities throughout the Aquifer’s realm together to help protect and conserve our region’s water resources, as well as inform the public about the shared responsibilities of good stewardship of the SVRP Aquifer and connected natural waterways. Water conservation is near and dear to us at Rogue Heart, so the chance to work with IWAC was a perfect match.

Planned to meet timely needs in both autumn and spring, the project involved the production of three video PSA’s to help inform the public on the common seasonal risks of backflow contamination into their home and neighborhood drinking water. Backflow can occur when pressure changes or flow is disrupted within the greater water system and contaminants from unclean water “backflow.” Luckily, there are several ways for homeowners to take preventative measures to protect their family and neighbors from backflow contamination, and we learned that a key opportunity is to practice safe, professional testing of your outdoor irrigation system, especially during sprinkler blow-out season. Shooting the video on a gorgeous early autumn morning in a nearby Spokane neighborhood was all the more delightful with guest appearances from ONE cute toddler and TWO English Bulldogs who all had fun playing in a backyard water feature for the sake of B-Roll.

Once things thawed-out in the spring, we reignited the production of the second two PSA’s which were similarly focused on backflow prevention and water conservation, but showcasing key interviews with representatives from Coeur d’Alene and Liberty Lake, as well as expanding the overall messaging to include businesses as well as residential homeowner viewers. One video keyed-in on retrofitting sprinkler heads to more efficient spray nozzles and proactively adjusting the accuracy and runtime to further conserve water. The third video was an informative introduction to having your irrigation system tested annually by a licensed professional in order to ensure that no contamination has infiltrated your home’s water, as well as helpful resources to safely restart your sprinkler system as the weather warms up. Although no babies or puppies were involved in the spring shoot, it was fun for #TeamRogueHeart to adventure a little further from our studio and showcase the neighboring municipalities and water utilities who all have a stake in protecting our aquifer.

The process of producing this series of PSAs alongside IWAC was very rewarding and illuminating. With all of our water conservation work since 2019, it is awesome to continue expanding our understanding and help to amplify adaptive and important water safety and stewardship messaging. We even had the chance to assist with some of the public distribution of the pieces and help get IWAC established on social media. BTW – if you haven’t already, be sure to follow them on Facebook and Instagram! Ultimately, all three of these videos are enormously informative, and as a relatively new homeowner myself, I personally learned a lot about the indoor and outdoor water systems of houses, and how we can all do our part to help keep water in our communities safe and clean for everyone to enjoy – so cheers to that!

Greta Carlson

Written By Greta

With a background in media and digital marketing, Greta layers her love of storytelling into every campaign strategy and creative project. Her career began on film industry sets and since then has advanced into the communications field to direct comprehensive marketing strategies in numerous industries in order to grow and evolve digital impact. You can usually find her drinking coffee, skiing the local slopes, enjoying the magic of the movies, traveling the world, or palling around with her dog Moose.

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