Volume III, Number 7
eMDE is a monthly publication of the Maryland Department of the Environment. It covers articles on current environmental issues and events in the state.
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Students from Digital Harbor High School joined MDE Deputy Secretary Bob Summers and MDE’s water quality monitoring staff to monitor water quality in the Inner Harbor for World Water Monitoring Day (WWMD). The group used tests kits specifically designed for WWMD and compared the results with tests taken using MDE’s sophisticated equipment.
World Water Monitoring Day 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. An easy-to-use test kit enables everyone from children to adults to sample local water bodies for a core set of water quality parameters including temperature, acidity (pH), clarity (turbidity) and dissolved oxygen (DO). Results are shared with participating communities around the globe through the WWMD website at www.worldwatermonitoringday.org.
“Maryland students participating in World Water Monitoring Day, in the Inner Harbor as well as across the State, receive hands-on experience assessing the condition of their local environment,” said MDE Secretary Bob Summers. “These students use some of the same basic tests that MDE uses to develop objective information needed to assess, protect, and restore Maryland’s waters. World Water Monitoring Day helps remind students, as well as all Marylanders, of the importance of knowing whether our waterways are clean and doing all we can to protect this most precious resource.”
Digital Harbor High School will upload their data to data collected worldwide. Students will be able to view the results of their work online and compare their findings with those of other students, including students from Anhui, China, one of Maryland’s Sister States. The effort complements Maryland’s commitment to promoting environmental education as embodied in the Chesapeake Bay 2000 Agreement.
“I think it’s important to get the kids out monitoring the water quality in the bay, having hands on experiences and seeing what real professionals do,” stated Beverly Feig AP biology teacher at Digital Harbor High School. “It is a great compliment to our curriculum.”
MDE utilizes a number of scientific methods, including real-time monitoring networks and sampling, to collect water quality data and evaluate it to assure that waterways are safe for drinking water, swimming, fishing, industrial, and agricultural uses.
World Water Monitoring Day recognizes the anniversary of the U.S. Clean Water Act, which was enacted by the U.S. Congress in 1972 to restore and protect the country’s water resources. The coordinators of WWMD, the Water Environment Federation (WEF) and the International Water Association (IWA) plan to expand participation to one million people in 100 countries by 2012.
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