independent

Thursday 17 October 2019

DCU preparing for 'Water Blitz' on our local waterways

Seamus Walsh and Evelyn Cusack at the launch of the Dublin Water Blitz at the Water Institute in Dublin City University
Seamus Walsh and Evelyn Cusack at the launch of the Dublin Water Blitz at the Water Institute in Dublin City University

Dublin City University's Water Institute has partnered with Earthwatch Europe for the first Dublin WaterBlitz, taking place on September 20 to 23.

The project encourages Dubliners to test the water in rivers, lakes, streams and canals around the capital so that a snapshot of the health and state of Dublin's waterways can be taken.The survey is easy to do and the records collected will help direct conservation action.

Anyone can register to be part of the WaterBlitz on the Earthwatch site and they will receive a free testing kit in the post.

Over the four days in late September, they can test the water as many times as they like and input their results on the Freshwater Watch app.

Earthwatch will then will compile a report from the data collected that will give a picture of our local waterways. This report will be sent to all volunteers.

The deadline for registration is September 15.

Our waterways face increasing threats from development, as well as from human waste pollution, industrial pollution and fertilisers used for growing crops, all of which can contribute to increased levels of nutrients such as nitrates and phosphates in watercourses.

The Dublin WaterBlitz was launched at DCU's Water Institute by two of Met Eireann's top scientists, Evelyn Cusack, Head of Forecasting and Seamus Walsh, Head of Climatology and Observations. Mr Walsh said: 'Met Eireann supports DCU in the Water Blitz, a citizen science project, and we'd like to encourage all the people out there to get involved Because it's our environment, it's our water, and people need to take ownership of the scientific aspect of water, because it's very important, it's a fundamental aspect of our daily lives.'

Ms. Cusack added: 'We're fortunate here in Ireland that we have an abundance of rainfall and clean fresh water, and we want to keep it that way. Everyone has a responsibility to ensure our water remains clean and healthy.'

Fingal Independent

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