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Riverwatch volunteers help provide crucial data

Stream running through a meadow
Albrecht Fietz | Fietz Fotos via Pixabay
Pixabay: https://bit.ly/3Bz1Wa5
Stream running through a meadow

A long-time citizen science program is looking for volunteers to explore streams and gather data.

Hannah Griffis, with the non-profit Riverwatch, says while the Illinois Environmental Protection agency is charged with monitoring waterways, they don't have enough staff to cover everything.

"They only get to about 15 percent of the streams every year. So us being able to send, anybody who is interested, out into their local streams really helps collect data."

Griffis says once a year the data is compiled into a report and made available to policymakers, but, she says, volunteers can also help fix problems faster.

"But we also really encourage our volunteers to be stewards of their own watershed. If they find problems to take data that they find in their streams to local governments because that moves so much faster."

People interested in becoming a volunteer need to attend a training workshop on March 26 at Giant City State Park. For more information
browse to: https://bit.ly/3LM0MwA

Born in Newport, Rhode Island to a military family, Kevin Boucher traveled the country and the world at a young age before his family settled in Murphysboro, Illinois in 1976. He earned a Bachelor's degree in Radio-Television at Southern Illinois University (SIU) in Carbondale and worked in commercial radio before becoming the Traffic Manager at WSIU Public Television. Boucher has since earned a Master's degree in Professional Media & Media Management Studies from SIU's College of Mass Communication & Media Arts. He is an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys gardening and exploring the flora and fauna of the Shawnee National Forest and other beautiful natural areas across southern Illinois. Kevin is embarking on a new path with WSIU as the Community Engagement Producer for WSIU Radio. Look for Kevin's work on air and on line.
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