20 Learn to Monitor Local Water Resources

Washington PA  Observer Reporter
13 February 2011
By Linda Metz, Staff writer

Nearly 20 people were trained Saturday to monitor water resources, specifically local streams, for problems that may put cold water resources at risk.

The training program was sponsored by National Trout Unlimited, the Pennsylvania Council of Trout Unlimited, the Chestnut Ridge Trout Unlimited Chapter and Washington County Conservation League, that consists of several counties including Washington. It was held at the Chartiers Township municipal building.

"I was very happy with the turnout," said Dave Sewak, National Trout Unlimited Marcellus Shale field coordinator.

The daylong local program is one of five being held to train people in how to monitor water resources, conduct visual assessments and report violations of state laws to appropriate state agencies.

Coldwater Conservation Corps volunteers provide an extra set of eyes and ears on the ground, making sure special watersheds and cold water resources are protected, said Sewak.

The monitors will keep an eye on local streams for water temperatures and pH and dissolved solid levels, among a variety of other items.

"We have them doing baseline monitoring," Sewak explained.

And while Sewak said there haven't been a lot of problems caused by Marcellus Shale drilling, he explained that it's best to have people ready to identify problems should they arise.

Trout Unlimited is especially concerned about conditions since trout are very susceptible to pollution, he stated.