University of Idaho Extension is offering an innovative program to train citizen volunteers about regional water quality issues. The IDAH2
O Master Water Steward program was launched in fall 2010 and already has over 150 certified volunteers. Participants in the program attend an 8-hour workshop which combines classroom instruction and hands-on field work.
Once a volunteer becomes a certified Master Water Steward, they then adopt a stream location to conduct regular monitoring on. Monitoring includes habitat, biological, chemical and physical assessments. All data collected from the Stewards is uploaded to a website that is made publicly available. The main focus of the program is to educate citizens on the status of their water quality and to help them understand the effects on streams, rivers and lakes. Youth involvement is also strongly encouraged. The data that is collected may also someday assist agencies in establishing water quality standards and priorities.
For more information contact the IDAH2O Coordinator