Scientists from the Watershed Management Division’s Monitoring and Assessment Program (MAP) have had a busy summer. With the pandemic requiring social distancing, along with other protective measures like face masks, sampling logistics to ensure staff safety have been even more complicated. Despite these challenges, MAP scientists have measured water chemistry at over 70 river and stream sites to inform upcoming wastewater treatment facility permits. Understanding the current condition of these receiving waters is a critical component to ensuring future permits will protect water quality. They’ve also sampled dozens of other river and stream sites to assess impacts of climate change, air pollution, logging, agriculture, and stormwater.
In a few weeks they’ll kick off the fall sampling season, which runs through October, with more than 150 stream sites planned. They will assess the biological and chemical health of these streams by collecting aquatic insects, surveying fish, and measuring water chemistry.
Chemical and biological results and assessments are available online through the Vermont Integrated Watershed Information System.