I'm excited to announce that, thanks to funding from the State of Vermont's Watershed Grants Program, we are able to add 3 new sites to our monthly water quality monitoring program! Starting in May, the Black River Action Team will collect river water from the Winery Road Bridge, Greven Field, and behind the Ludlow Fire Station. The goal will be to add depth to our existing regime of data collection, so we can begin to gain a sense of the overall health of the Black River. Sites are chosen for specific reasons: generally, we seek to learn about any potential impacts to the river from upstream sources such as a waste-water treatment facility, a snow-making pond, or a railroad and road crossing.
As with all our monthly samples, the chemical tests will be done at the State of Vermont's LaRosa Water Quality Lab, and the bacteria test will be conducted by Endyne Labs, Inc in Lebanon, NH. The Watershed Grant will cover our bacteria testing costs, mileage for our "River Dipper" volunteers, and shipping costs to get our chemical samples up to the LaRosa lab. LaRosa offers an annual partnership program to conduct those chemical tests at no cost to groups such as BRAT and the nearby Ottauquechee River Group (ORG).
Many thanks to the Watershed Grant Program! It is a voluntarily-funded pot of money; taxpayers choose to donate a portion of their tax return to the fund as a way to help small organizations such as BRAT and ORG do the important work we do. In return, donors receive an awesome conservation license plate of their choice! Learn more here.