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Question: I am interested in testing local water quality myself in river. Where can I start?

Agaa is asking a question about general: Follow this topic

by Agaa | November 11, 2020 19:31 | #25046


For conducting a student project, I am interested in testing river water quality in my city, what do you think would be the best way to conduct the research in a small team. The main question we want to investigate is what impacts the most quality of the water



6 Comments

Hi. I'm not an expert, but I have some experience. There are many aspects of water quality; turbidity, pH, metals, pesticides, and, what I know most about, bacteriological quality analysis. We probably need to know your motivation; is this river threatened by industrial pollution, or by other kinds of pollution?

I've co-written this "Water Checklist" which was designed for Engineers Without Borders engineers for they kind of work they do in low and middle income countries; it may be relevant to you, though your interest may be different: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1rlqD-or39faRLLl7-Zdr2LtbXCHACSLFuBqbDTnP0Yw/edit?usp=sharing

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Thanks @robertlread ! This is a great guide. I left a question on your Google Doc.


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Most states already have volunteer groups that do water quality monitoring. Many of these programs were started or are under the guidance of programs that were a part of the Clean Water Act. Find a group in your state you can help with. They are great in that they provide training and equipment. In addition you are contributing to a larger data gathering effort. If I knew your state, I could be more specific.

@webbhm do you have a general resource link we could share? I know there are informational River Network resources I've seen this year for some inspiration too @Agaa: https://www.rivernetwork.org/citizen-based-water-quality-monitoring-covid-19/

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I suggest you start with these two resources, and see where they lead you: https://acwi.gov/monitoring/vm/

https://archive.epa.gov/water/archive/web/html/index-18.html

Most of these groups are connected to the Clean Water Act that was set up by the EPA.


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@Agaa thanks for the question! Another post I'd recommend you check out here on the Public Lab website is: https://publiclab.org/notes/anngneal/12-08-2017/7-ways-to-measure-monitor-and-evaluate-water-quality

What kind of water quality monitoring are you interested in? Learn more about what other people have asked or are interested in around this topic here: https://publiclab.org/wiki/water-quality

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