Volunteer lake monitoring program in need of volunteers

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ)- The Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet and the Watershed Watch in Kentucky needs volunteers for the volunteer lake monitoring program.

The program gives residents the opportunity to join other citizen scientists across the state who have made a commitment to monitor and report the condition of their chosen lake on a regular basis, now through October.

Eric Russell, who lives near Kentucky Lake in Marshall County, said the time required to be involved in the lake monitoring program is minimal compared to the sense of contribution he feels. I went to MSU and studied Biology and GIS years ago, but ended up following a different career path, Russell said. I live near the lake and want to be a part of helping to monitor our natural resources.

Officials say the program helps citizen scientists expand water resource monitoring, address data gaps and improve the characterization of water quality in the lakes of Kentucky.

Collection, observation and reporting procedures are designed to be inexpensive, quick and easy to perform, and provide hands-on experience for volunteers. On-site training, materials and monitoring equipment are provided free of charge.

Volunteers conduct Secchi Depth monitoring, using a circular disk to measure water transparency as it relates to sunlight penetration. These measurements can provide valuable information for detecting trends in lake water quality. Volunteers also document the lake condition, visual appearance, and current weather, and take photographs whenever possible.

If you are interested in becoming involved in the Lakes Monitoring Program, visit http://bit.ly/KentuckyVLMPand contact robert.blair@ky.gov at 502-782-6893.

Volunteers from the Paintsville Utilities Water Treatment Plant learn to conduct Secchi Depth monitoring. They plan to monitor eight locations on Paintsville Lake, providing data for the program as well as source water protection for the drinking water supply.

Categories: News, State News

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