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World Water Monitoring Day Educates Students

 

            The Cityís Storm Water Quality Branch of the Department of Environmental Services, the Clean Water Branch of the state Department of Health and the Civil Works Technical Branch of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers celebrated World Water Monitoring Day (WWMD) in Makiki on Friday, November 7, and Friday, November 14. 

      WWMD is an international education and outreach program that builds public awareness and involvement in protecting water resources around the world by engaging citizens to conduct basic monitoring of their local water bodies.  The event is held annually in the fall to recognize the anniversary (October 18) of the U.S. Clean Water Act, which the U.S. Congress enacted in 1972 to restore and protect the countryís water resources.  Worldwide participation is expected to surpass last year when more than 46,000 people tested water quality in 43 countries.

            Students sampled at two sites:  the Makiki Pump Station and Magic Island.  Students were introduced to the Makiki Sub-Watershed in an outdoor lab setting that included hands-on water-sampling, learning how sediment and nutrients impact water quality, how life in the lower watershed is dependent upon what happens upstream along with live native stream animals and modified stream assessments.  The interactive components produced a three-fold message:

-        we all live in a watershed (everything is interconnected, the waters of Makiki Stream flows from the mountain to the sea)

-        we all have an effect on water quality (how we impact water quality by our activities upstream and how our activities affect those downstream)

-        We can all change our behavior to benefit the watershed, rather than harm it.

 

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            A total of 270 eighth-grade students and science teachers from Washington Intermediate School performed a visual assessment of Makikiís watershed.  The goal was to increase awareness of the impact peoplesí behaviors have on the quality of Makiki Stream, Ala Wai Canal and the ocean. 

      Sampling stations added hands-on experience for the students to test for a core set of water quality parameters including temperature, acidity (pH), clarity (turbidity) and dissolved oxygen (DO). 

      In December, a year-end report will be posted on www.WorldWaterMonitoringDay.com that documents program participation.

      Other partnering organizations were the Hawaii Water Environment Association, Division of Aquatic Resources, Hui Ku Maoli Ola and the Board of Water Supply.

      For more pollution prevention tips to be an everyday environmental hero or to volunteer for future cleanups in your area, go to www.cleanwaterhonolulu.com.

 

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Contact:

Iwalani Sato, 780-8872

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

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