Volunteers needed for 8th annual water quality snapshot day

Nevada Division of Environmental Protection LogoCARSON CITY, Nev.–The 8th annual Water Quality Snapshot Day will be held Saturday, May 10, in Reno, Truckee and Lake Tahoe, and volunteers are needed to help conduct the water quality sampling. The event is a citizen-based environmental effort designed to take a snapshot, at one moment in time, of the water quality throughout the Lake Tahoe and Truckee River watershed. Water quality monitoring will take place from the tributaries flowing into Lake Tahoe all the way to the waters of Pyramid Lake. It is sponsored by the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection, the City of Reno, Truckee River Watershed Council, University of California Cooperative Extension, and Tahoe Regional Planning Agency.

Community volunteers will meet at central locations in Reno, Truckee and Lake Tahoe for an overview briefing about water quality measurements. All volunteers will meet at 8:30 a.m. to get their team and stream assignments. Reno-area volunteers will meet at Bartley Ranch Regional Park, 6000 Bartley Ranch Rd.; Truckee-area volunteers will meet at the Sagehen Field Station, approximately10 miles north of Truckee, CA; South Lake Tahoe volunteers will meet at Lake Tahoe Community College cafeteria; and North Lake Tahoe volunteers will meet at Sierra Nevada College, Incline Village.

Volunteer teams, led by trained group leaders, will then fan out to take samples and measurements at various locations at the same time on the same day. The teams will field-test streams for dissolved oxygen, conductivity, pH and temperature; collect water samples for laboratory analysis of nutrients, sediment and bacteria; and conduct visual habitat assessments of the sites. Team leaders will share watershed facts and provide information about how citizens can improve and protect the Truckee River and Lake Tahoe watershed.

The goal of the event is to stimulate citizen interest and participation in local water quality issues. It is also intended to provide baseline data that potentially could be used in ongoing and future environmental projects, and to stimulate a large-scale collaborative effort to prevent further degradation of water quality in the watershed. To sign up as a volunteer, call Mary Kay Riedl at (775) 687-9454 (Truckee River-Nevada portion), Beth Christman at (530) 550-8760 (Truckee River – California portion) or Susie Kocher at (530) 542-2571 (Lake Tahoe).

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