EPA Awards Research Grant to Georgia Environmental Protection Division for Water Quality Monitoring Project
News Releases from Region 04
EPA Funds Innovative Research across the Country to Address State Environmental Issues
Atlanta – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that Georgia Environmental Protection Division (GA EPD) will receive funding for the “Low-Cost Sensors for Real-Time Continuous Water Quality Monitoring” project. Nationally, funding was given to research projects addressing priority environmental and human health problems in 14 states through partnerships between EPA’s research office, regional offices, and states.
EPA will collaborate with the GA EPD’s Georgia Adopt-A-Stream Program to build, deploy, and evaluate a low-cost water quality sensing network that enables users to log data in real time.
“EPA encourages the use of innovative scientific approaches to help solve important environmental problems,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “By working with our state partners and engaging the public we can foster creative solutions to these challenges.”
“The Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) appreciates the financial support for this important work,” said EPD Director Richard Dunn. “The goal is to create 15 water quality sensors that will be deployed to measure dissolved oxygen, conductivity, pH and temperature.”
The research announced today is designed to address pressing environmental issues faced by the states. EPA is uniquely equipped to provide scientific expertise to help tackle these problems. The selected projects focus on non-point source nitrogen pollution, volatile organic compound emission detection, harmful algal blooms, roadway air pollution near schools, and other environmental and human health issues across the country. The projects will employ innovative approaches including citizen science, crowdsourcing, a challenge competition, and advanced monitoring technologies.
Protecting water quality is a high priority for state environmental agencies. Monitoring of water bodies is traditionally accomplished by collecting discrete measurements of water quality parameters in the field, making it difficult to observe natural patterns and trends in rapidly changing systems. Technological advancements have made “real-time” continuous monitoring of water quality possible; however, most of these technologies are too expensive for widespread use. This project will involve working with citizen scientists to build low cost water quality sensors that allow for continuous data collection of key water quality parameters. Volunteer monitoring groups will deploy these sensors in a continuous monitoring network, and EPA will evaluate the sensors’ performance as compared to standard equipment. Project results will help demonstrate the usefulness of low-cost sensor technologies for assessing water quality.
Learn more about this and the other projects here: https://www.epa.gov/innovation/2017-regionalstate-innovation-projects.
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