Last April 11, 2013, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) gave a three-hour presentation at Camp Verde to talk about groundwater and the consequences of pumping it up has on the Verde River in the state of Arizona. The importance of the presentation lay in its use as a bridge between the expert and the layman, and the possible cooperation between them. If the population is to take effective action to preserve the Verde River and the groundwater supply, it needs to understand the scientists’ language and their message.
The U.S. Geological Survey presentation gave both facts for the specialists and directions for the residents of Arizona. The latter were aimed at trying to make residents aware about their part in the process of saving the Verde River, on how its flow is affected when the groundwater reserve is pumped for use. The public’s enthusiasm and assistance related to the presentation is proof of their interest; the scientific community is now trying to cater for the citizens’ need for information by attempting to convert a very technical message into one that can be understood by the general public.
The U. S. Geological Survey is a science organization whose job is to provide impartial information about ecosystems and the environment. Trying to do so in a language everyone can understand is the first step. The next step to take is defining more precisely the course of action in both private and political fields.