Our approach to improve local rivers and streams begins with identifying the biggest stressors to aquatic life. That’s why we’ve developed a comprehensive monitoring program that includes water column and sediment chemistry, fish and macroinvertebrate communities, qualitative habitat evaluation and winter chloride/conductivity monitoring. These, in addition, continuous dissolved oxygen and wastewater effluent data, are all included in our analyses. Using the same state approved data collection and analyses as other major watershed groups in the region, we will incorporate our data into a tool that will identify and rank restorability projects at the stream reach level.
Additional requirements related to nutrients from the regulatory community and environmental groups add another layer of complexity to finding meaningful and cost-effective ways to improve our local rivers and streams. We are already working with both parties to determine a timeline to develop a common Nutrient Assessment and Reduction Plan (NARP) for members at the watershed scale. Illinois EPA plans to include components of the NARP in future stormwater and wastewater permits.
Map of monitoring locations (coming soon!)