Those of you who are familiar with the Alabama Water Watch (AWW) Program probably know that we went through a rough patch the past few years (as did many other volunteer-based organizations, NGOs, as well as state and federal agencies). Funding from grants has been much more limited and the competition for fewer grant dollars has greatly increased. Thanks to support from the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, the Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station, and integration into the AU Water Resources Center, AWW’s future is a bright one! The move to AWW’s new home and merger with the AU Water Resources Center in the new Hubbard CASIC Building at 559 Devall Drive at Auburn University was completed in September of 2013.
Thanks to the concerted efforts of the AWW staff, our dedicated volunteer trainers, and dozens of veteran monitors and newly-certified monitors, 2013 was a very productive year. Accomplishments included:
- 25 water chemistry workshops,
- 17 bacteriological workshops,
- 2 stream Biomonitoring workshops ,
- 29 volunteer monitor recertification sessions,
- 391 newly-certified AWW volunteer monitors, and,
- submission of over 3,500 water quality data records to the online AWW database. Continue reading
by Bill Deutsch
We water monitors often think of AWW success in terms of sites monitored, water data collected and positive actions taken with that information. The “crème de la crème” might be an improvement in water quality or policy, and we’ve seen some good examples of that over the years (see our Success Story blogs on this website). But what about more subtle, even hidden, benefits of our program and work? Continue reading
by Bill Deutsch
January 29, 2014…OK, so I procrastinated in my monthly monitoring of Hodnett and Saugahatchee Creeks in Lee County (Tallapoosa River Watershed). Because the last day of the month was not an option, I was left with three choices: a) sample today with snow on the ground, b) wait until tomorrow after temperatures are forecasted to plunge to 13 F overnight, or c) the “unthinkable” …skip sampling in January. Trudging through the snow for the first time in 15 years of monthly sampling of Hodnett Creek was fun, and my old Border Collie, Jazz, accompanied me to make sure I didn’t get lost (I made sure she drank out of the creek downstream of where I monitored!). Air temperatures hovered around 1 C, but the water was a toasty 4 C at both sites (record low for my data). Continue reading
AWW traveled to north Alabama last November to conduct water monitor trainings in the Clear Creek Watershed, thanks to a grant from Patagonia. The grant was secured in early 2013 to build grassroots capacity in monitoring and watershed stewardship activities in the watershed (go to www.alabamawaterwatch.org and click Related Projects for more on the Clear Creek Project). Continue reading
The AU Ecological Engineering class (BSEN 5510/6510), taught by Dr. Puneet Shrivastava, met with Eric Reutebuch and Cliff Webber last November to learn about Alabama Water Watch(AWW) and to examine a local stream using the AWW Water Chemistry Monitoring and Stream Biomonitoring protocols. Continue reading
About a hundred people gathered at the AU Fisheries Pavilion on October 12th to celebrate the career and achievements of Dr. Bill Deutsch. After 26 years of service, Bill now works primarily for his one dozen-plus grandkids (its official – see below).