ADEM held their Triennial Review of Alabama’s Water Quality Standards on July 19th, 2012. This review, conducted every three years, is a public hearing that gives the public an opportunity to become involved in the state’s water quality evaluation and review process through submission of data and comments.
AWW’s goal is not only to educate Alabama’s citizenry in water quality testing, but to empower people to use their water data and knowledge of water issues to become actively involved in the management of their local water resources.
In keeping with this data-to-action strategy, AWW water data from the past five years were queried and analyzed relative to ADEM water quality standards. Two queries were run, one to evaluate AWW sites based on dissolved oxygen (DO) concentration and the other based on pathogen (E. coli bacteria) concentration. During this period, 13,437 water chemistry (six parameters, including DO) and 4,910 bacteria records were submitted to the AWW online database.
Results of the queries of these 18,000+ data records indicated that 20 streams were impaired from low DO (less than 5 ppm) and 9 waterbodies were impaired from excessive E. coli levels, based on defined criteria.