Local families are being invited to take part in the 2017 Bristol Avon WaterBlitz, a campaign organised by Bristol Avon Rivers Trust (BART) to collect as many water quality samples as possible in a week from the Bristol Avon and its tributaries. Taking place from 10th – 16th June, the project will gain an invaluable snapshot of the health of our rivers that will help to direct future conservation efforts.
Participants will use simple colour dip tests to determine the concentration of phosphates and nitrates in the rivers, which are naturally occurring chemicals but can be increased by man-made pollution. The data collected during the Bristol Avon WaterBlitz will be used by in Earthwatch research into the state of the world’s freshwater systems and by BART to plan local improvements.
Harriet Alvis, BART Project Officer, explained, “There is a wide network of streams and rivers within the Bristol Avon catchment, and we often see nutrient pollution entering these watercourses and affecting the water quality. This degrades these important ecosystems and the species that inhabit them, therefore it is increasingly important for local people to monitor their local rivers.”
“The WaterBlitz is a great opportunity for people to get actively involved in monitoring their local watercourse and help us to better understand the condition of the water environment and protect it in the future.”
Using the free water testing kit, volunteers can sample their chosen river or stream in the Bristol Avon catchment and upload the results to Freshwater Watch to compare the water quality level to other sites on an interactive results map.
“We’re also encouraging people to show us how they’re getting involved by sharing a picture or video of your day sampling on Twitter using #BAWaterBlitz,” added Harriet.
The Waterblitz launch coincides with the Festival of Nature opening weekend on Bristol Harbourside (10th-11th June) alongside a wide range of free family activity, talks and special events – find out more at festivalofnature.org.uk.
To sign up as monitor, volunteers must register by Friday 2nd June on the following link only :