Occoquan Watershed Documentary Film

Reclaiming Our Water is a 60-minute film that tells the story of Northern Virginia’s Occoquan Reservoir, its surrounding landscape, and the challenges of meeting a growing demand for drinking water for over one million people.

The Occoquan has the distinction of being the largest reservoir system in the United States, which provides a safe drinking water supply through the use of reclaimed wastewater. Not surprisingly, the Occoquan’s technical solutions have attracted worldwide attention, but technical solutions are only part of the story.

The Film
In Reclaiming Our Water, radio host Frank Stasio narrates a tale that follows the streams as they flow from the Bull Run Mountains in the west to the Potomac River coastal plain. Its stories are set in farms and fields, laboratories and treatment plants, and suburbs, and shopping centers. Its protagonists talk of swimming holes, sewage plants, and nets full of flipping fish.

The film describes how, over the years, things have changed. The river and its tributaries have been dammed, and their water is used for drinking, waste disposal, irrigation, fishing, boating, swimming, and nature-watching. But the Occoquan remains a fragile system and many heroes of this story have devoted their personal and/or professional lives to the protection of its waters. The final chapters have yet to be written.

Here is a 6 minute short of the film.

The full 60 minute film.

The film is narrated by NPR’s Frank Stasio and produced by Dave Eckert. Director of Photography is Michael Hamilton. Score by Jamey Turner, Glass Harpist, United Gospel Singers, Andrew Acosta & The New Old-Time String Band, and Speedy Tolliver.

Sponsors include the Northern Virginia Regional Commission, Town of Occoquan, Fairfax County Water Authority, Upper Occoquan Sewage Authority, Prince William County, Vulcan Materials Company, Prince William Conservation Alliance, and the Audubon Naturalist Society.