The Milwaukee 7 Water Council has been awarded a $172,500 U.S. Department of Commerce grant to help plan for water-related economic development.

Specifically, the grant funds a study of how best to strengthen and enhance the Milwaukee region’s freshwater processing and treatment capabilities, U.S. Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.) and U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Wis.) said Tuesday in announcing the grant.

When completed, the study will guide the area’s water-related industries and research community to better work in conjunction with one another to lead to the region’s ascent as an international hub for freshwater research, education, technology development and manufacturing.

“With this grant the Department of Commerce recognizes Milwaukee for what it is — the premiere place in the country for water industry and research,” Kohl said in a press release. “This funding will help the region continue to make its mark in this growing field.”

View the full story by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel