Funding will be used to outfit watershed volunteers with water testing equipment enabling them to put their recent training to practice.
PATTON – The Chest Creek Watershed Alliance (CCWA) has recently received funding to purchase water testing equipment that will be used to develop a long-term water quality monitoring program in the Chest Creek watershed.
Volunteers have also completed Coldwater Conservation Corps (CCC) training that was provided by Jake Lemon, Eastern Shale Gas Monitoring coordinator for Trout Unlimited.
During the training, which was held on April 25, watershed volunteers learned how to use monitoring equipment to test for various water quality parameters, including pH, conductivity, total dissolved solids, temperature and turbidity (water clarity). They also learned how to measure the cross-sectional area of the stream, which is used to estimate the flow.
Initial water testing will be used to establish a baseline against which future measurements can be compared.
The group will then complete bi-weekly and monthly sampling of stream locations throughout the watershed. The focus of the CCC program is to monitor streams surrounding shale gas development activities, but the CCWA plans to expand their program to monitor for additional threats to water quality, including sedimentation, abandoned mine drainage and other pollution sources.
“This training and water testing equipment is very important to our group and will be used to help keep an eye on the health of Chest Creek and our other local streams,” said Darice Brady-McKee, president of the CCWA.
“If any problems occur, we want to be able to spot them quickly and take action to protect people, wildlife, and the environment.”
Financial support for this project is provided by the Dominion Foundation, which is dedicated to the economic, physical and social health of communities served by Dominion companies.
This grant program is administered by the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy in commitment to its core mission of conserving Pennsylvania’s diverse ecosystems through science-based strategy, leadership, and collaboration.
The Chest Creek Watershed Alliance is a non-profit organization that was established in 2003 to improve and protect the quality and the beauty of Chest Creek and to enhance life in the Chest Creek Watershed with an emphasis on clean water and good fishing.