On June 14, 2017, COA and the NJDEP launched the Navesink Ambient Citizen Water Quality Monitoring and Source Tracking Program. This is a weekly sampling program that will be conducted for 52 weeks at 18 sites until June 2018 by citizen scientists in the watershed. This collaboration between the DEP and COA, along with support from Navesink River Municipalities Committee, is the first time that citizen scientist volunteers will participate to help “Find and Fix” the sources of bacterial pollution in the Navesink River. COA is the field coordinator for this sampling program and is mobilizing volunteers and other resources to help collect samples, then courier them to NJDEP’s Leeds Point Laboratory every week.
Every Wednesday morning from 8am – 10am, our citizen scientists arrive eager and ready to move into the field and collect water quality samples. There are 18 sampling locations, covering five towns in the Navesink watershed. Once volunteers return with their samples, COA collects the bottles and transports them to the DEP’s Marine Water Monitoring station in Leeds Point, where each sample is analyzed for fecal indicator bacteria, including Enterococci. Two weeks of sampling have occurred thus far, and COA is receiving excellent feedback from our volunteers. The results from the DEP’s water quality analysis will be forthcoming.
COA is confident that this collaborative citizen monitoring program can be used as a model for bringing together different groups and entities to find and fix water quality impairments in other watersheds. All updates related to this sampling program can be found on the Facebook page, “Rally for the Navesink.”