Crawford Stewardship Project works to protect the environment of Crawford County and neighboring regions from threats of polluting and extractive industries, to promote sustainable land use, environmental justice, and local control of natural resources

Crawford Stewardship Project is a nonprofit organization.
Donations are tax deductible.

Support CSP
Send a check to:
Crawford Stewardship Project
P.O. Box 284
Gays Mills, WI 54631


Crawford Stewardship Project is grateful for the generous support of the Wisconsin Community Fund.
RESIST, 259 Elm St, Somerville, MA 02144, 617-623-5110,

“We abuse land because we regard it as a commodity belonging to us. When we see land as a community to which we belong, we may begin to use it with love and respect.” ~Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac

"CAFOs are only profitable because so much of the cost and damage is externalized onto the environment, neighbors and wildlife. The monitoring, supervision, clean-up, restitution, fines are not happening, thus the true cost of CAFOs never find the way onto the balance books." Talking point from the CAFO Conference.

“A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.”
~Aldo Leopold, 1948. A Sand County Almanac.

Water Quality and CAFO Monitoring

Water Action Volunteer Trainings with Valley Stewardship Network

CSP is looking for people to do water quality monitoring around the Wauzeka CAFO, sand mining operations, as well as other threatened waters in Crawford County.  Monitor training is free and provided by Valley Stewardship Network.  This volunteer opportunity requires going to a specified creek location once per month from April to October. The water monitoring process can take a half an hour to an hour. You will also take water samples for lab testing 3 or 4 times and it is usually coordinated with the monthly monitoring.

If you are interested in becoming a citizen volunteer water monitor these are the Dates for upcoming spring Water Action Volunteer (WAV) Trainings, Co-sponsored by Valley Stewardship Network and the Wisconsin WAV Program, UW-Extension.
 Nature Nooks Retreat,
S4878 County Rd. S, Viroqua, WI 54665
   Thursday, May 15, 2014; 4-8 pm--WAV Training Session 1
   Tuesday, May 20, 2014; 4-8 pm--In-depth WAV Macroinvertebrate Training
   Saturday, June 7, 2014; 9 am to 2 pm—WAV Training Session 2
   Instructors: Kris Stepenuck of UW-Extension; Vicki Ramsay, Rice Span, Paul Hayes, and Shelly Brenneman of Valley Stewardship Network
 For more information or to register contact Valley Stewardship Network,
by email at or call 608-637-3615.

April 10, 2013

Crawford Stewardship Project (CSP) received the Citizen-based Monitoring Award for Group Effort at the Citizen-based Monitoring Conference in Wisconsin Rapids on April 5, 2013.

The Group Effort award is presented in recognition of a group of monitors working within a monitoring network, watershed organization, citizens group or other collaboration.  CSP received an engraved plaque from the UW-Extension and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

 “We were so pleased to receive this award in recognition of our work in helping to protect the surface and groundwater of Crawford County”, states Kathy Byrne, Co-Coordinator of Crawford Stewardship Project who supervises CSP’s citizen volunteer monitoring efforts.  She adds, “Our volunteers are out at various sites monthly from April to October collecting data that is submitted to the Water Action Volunteers (WAV) database.  They also collect water samples that are tested at a DNR certified lab for bacteria and chemicals which is paid for by CSP.  We appreciate the dedication of our monitors, some of whom have been doing this for a number of years. They are the ones who received this award and it is only because of them that we are able to do this work.” 

In 2002, the University of Wisconsin-Extension and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources implemented the annual Wisconsin Volunteer Stream Monitoring Awards Program to recognize exemplary work in volunteer stream monitoring in Wisconsin.

The CSP water monitoring effort began in 2007 when a hog CAFO expanded near Wauzeka.  Concerns about possible pollution of surface and groundwater spurred the organization to begin their monitoring program.  “Since that time one of our sites near the CAFO has had problems with elevated levels of bacteria including e-coli as well as phosphorus”, Kathy said. “We continue to monitor and have been in contact with the DNR regarding this”.

CSP’s monitoring efforts recently expanded to a creek near the frac sand mine south of Boscobel in Grant County and also plans to monitor near the Bridgeport frac sand mine that was just recently permitted by the Town.  “With so many threats to our water from industry it is more important than ever to protect this precious and finite resource”, said Kathy. “With the hope of additional volunteers in the future we would like to expand our efforts even further to other threatened streams in the area”, she added.

If you are interested in volunteering as a water monitor for CSP please contact Kathy Byrne at or call 608-734-3143.  All CSP volunteers are trained through Valley Stewardship Network.  Two training dates are currently scheduled for May 2 and May 11. For more information on the water monitoring training please contact Valley Stewardship Network at or call 608-637-3615.


Water Quality Monitoring - A Citizen's Approach
by Steve Furay in Common Breath Media 7/14/10

Board members get earful from those opposing CAFOs article by Jan Shepel in Wisconsin State Farmer 5/14/09

more articles at Research and Articles

Kristine Stepenuck (left), Water Action Volunteers Stream Monitoring Program Coordinator, UW-Extension and WI Department of Natural Resources presenting award to Kathy Byrne, Co-Coordinator, Crawford Stewardship Projec