World Water Monitoring Day was established to create awareness about the importance of protecting water resources around the world by engaging people to monitor their local water bodies. Water monitoring kits can be ordered any time for purchase.
Do you like the outdoors and getting your feet wet in streams?
Would you like to learn first-hand about the water quality where you live?
Are you interested in citizen science?
If you answered ‘yes’ to these questions, join the citizens of South Carolina who have been certified to monitor stream quality though the South Carolina Adopt-a-Stream program. Established in 2017, SC Adopt-a-Stream is an EPA-approved freshwater monitoring program that teaches volunteers how to collect bacteria, biological parameters, and chemical and physical data (including temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, and conductivity).
SC Adopt-a-Stream has awarded 1,400 certifications to contribute to the program. Over 200 sites statewide have been identified within the program’s database. Volunteers can become certified to collect data by attending one of the free workshops offered around the state.
Founded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in 1988, National Estuaries Week is recognized every third week of September as an opportunity to learn more about the benefits of our estuaries and coasts.
Estuaries are important to our environment, because they house many species of fish, reptiles, mammals and other aquatic life. They provide nesting and feeding habitats for plants and animals. Estuaries also act as a pollutant shield by filtering sediments from rivers and streams before they flow into the oceans. According to the National Safety Council’s Environmental Center, estuaries provide habitat for more than 75 percent of the U.S. commercial fish catch, and even greater percentage of recreational fish catch. The total fish catch in estuaries contributes $4.3 billion a year to the U.S. economy.
DHEC manages development, alterations, and shoreline stabilization activities in coastal and estuarine “tidelands” (land at or below high tide including coastal wetlands, mudflats and similar areas adjacent to coastal waters and integral to estuarine systems).
Here are some ways to celebrate National Estuaries Week:
Organize a community restoration event at a local bay, riverfront, ocean, or waterway.
Find a reserve that offers tours of estuaries to learn more.
With temperatures breaking the century mark across South Carolina this week, taking a dip in a cool lake, river, ocean or pool might be high on your list.
Before you and your family spend time in the water or on a boat this summer, put safety first. Drowning is the third leading cause of unintentional death worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. In South Carolina, accidental drowning is the third leading cause of death for children under 14.
Water safety tips to keep in mind:
Always supervise children around bodies of water.
It’s a good idea to appoint an adult to be the “water watcher” and take turns to give children in the water your undivided attention.
Enroll children and adults in swimming lessons.
Swim only in designated areas that are watched by a lifeguard.
Don’t swim alone even if an area is staffed with lifeguards. Always use the buddy system.
Do not dive into oceans, lakes or rivers. You never know how deep the water is or what might be below the surface.
When boating, follow these guidelines:
Always have children wear a life jacket that is U.S. Coast Guard-approved. Don’t rely on swimming aids like water wings or noodles. Learn more about life jackets from Safe Kids Worldwide.