September 18th is World Water Monitoring Day! Take part in the action by joining different water-related activities, from Source to Sea Cleanup Month to volunteer water monitoring programs in Connecticut. Connecticut has numerous waterbodies and waterways throughout the State, with thousands of miles of rivers and streams to hundreds of lakes and ponds and the substantial coastal waters of the Long Island Sound. With such an extensive network of waterbodies, CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection relies on volunteers and organizations to assist in water quality monitoring efforts.
The information volunteers provide can help detect issues, monitor status, and establish baselines, which are important to maintain the health and integrity of both individual waterbodies and the greater watershed. CT DEEP encourages participants of all skill levels and experience, with different tiers of monitoring available: 1) Basic monitoring using observational data, photographs, and written descriptions; 2) Intermediate monitoring using equipment to log data; and 3) advanced monitoring using expert or professional knowledge to develop more intensive studies, plans or assessments. A sampling of some of the programs available include:
- Riffle Bioassessment by Volunteers Program: An annual fall initiative, this program uses the presence of pollution sensitive macroinvertebrates to assess the general health of small streams. About 250 volunteers participated in the 2019 iteration of the program.
- Volunteer Stream Temperature Monitoring (V-STeM) Network: Through this program, volunteers use equipment to log stream temperatures year-round or seasonally.
These programs allow participants to become environmental stewards, empowered to engage and care for their local waters and ecosystems. Interested in helping keep our waterways and watershed healthy and clean? Learn more about:
- CT DEEP’s water monitoring programs
- Water-related Clean Ups with Save the Sound and the CT River Conservancy
- Green Infrastructure*
If you’re interested in learning about more in-depth water monitoring analyses, CT DEEP and its partners also manage year-long sampling and surveying of waters such as the Long Island Sound. These analyses are more technical and advanced than the volunteer monitoring programs; check out CT DEEP’s website or later posts for more information.
Source: CT DEEP
*The Retain the Rain program is supported by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. The Hartford Mayor’s Office of Sustainability is funded in part by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Long Island Sound Futures Fund. The views contained in this document are those of the authors and should not be interpreted as representing the opinions or policies of the U.S. Government or the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and its funding sources. Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute their endorsement by the U.S. Government, or the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation or its funding sources.