WEF, partners to kick-off World Water Monitoring Day on banks of Potomac

Sept. 4, 2007
The Water Environment Federation (WEF) will join with the International Water Association (IWA), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and other partnering organizations to kick-off World Water Monitoring Day 2007 on Tuesday, September 18 at Oronoco Bay Park in Alexandria, Va. Benjamin H. Grumbles, Assistant Administrator for U.S. EPA's Office of Water, is expected to lead a diverse group of participants in hands-on testing of the Potomac River...

ALEXANDRIA, VA, Aug. 29, 2007 -- The Water Environment Federation (WEF) will join with the International Water Association (IWA), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and other partnering organizations to kick-off World Water Monitoring Day 2007 on Tuesday, September 18 at Oronoco Bay Park in Alexandria, Va. Benjamin H. Grumbles, Assistant Administrator for U.S. EPA's Office of Water, is expected to lead a diverse group of participants in hands-on testing of the Potomac River.

World Water Monitoring Day (WWMD) is an international outreach program that builds public awareness and involvement in protecting water resources around the world. Held annually between September 18 and October 18, the program engages communities in monitoring the condition of local rivers, streams, estuaries and other water bodies. Since its inception in 2002, more than 80,000 people have participated in 50 countries.

"EPA encourages all citizens to learn about their water resources by participating in World Water Monitoring Day," said Grumbles. "By getting involved, participants spread awareness and increase the knowledge about the importance of water quality locally and globally. By becoming more aware, we are all more likely to serve as good stewards of our water resources."

Following brief opening remarks and a demonstration and safety review, attendees will break into small groups to conduct hands-on testing of the river. 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 then put into an international database and summarized on the program's Web site.

"The great thing about this program is that you don't have to be experienced to take part," said Linda Kelly, Managing Director of Public Communications for WEF. "It's designed to help connect people of all ages and experience levels with their environment and to better understand how their actions impact local water bodies. The goal is to have one million people in 100 countries participating by 2012. And, we're well on our way."

In addition to WEF, IWA, EPA and USGS, participating organizations include Perkin Elmer Instruments, Smithfield Foods, CH2M Hill, ITT Corporation, the Girl Scouts of the USA, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, the Jewish National Fund, LaMotte Company, the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, the Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin and the National Environmental Education Foundation.

Formally adopted by the Federation in July 2006, WEF and IWA -- its primary international partner -- encourage citizens and organizations from around the globe to share in this unique experience of water quality monitoring.

Formed in 1928, the Water Environment Federation (WEF) is a not-for-profit technical and educational organization with 32,000 individual members and 80 affiliated Member Associations representing an additional 50,000 water quality professionals throughout the world. WEF and its member associations proudly work to achieve our mission of preserving and enhancing the global water environment.

Also see:
-- "World Water Monitoring Day, September 18, 2007 -- call for participation"

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