Bristol Avon Blitz

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The 2018 Bristol Avon WaterBlitz is a campaign to collect as many water quality samples as possible from across the Bristol Avon Catchment. Taking place from 23-29 June 2018, the project is helping to gain an invaluable snapshot of the health of our rivers that will help to direct future conservation efforts. Email water@earthwatch.org.uk to find out more.

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Thanks to funding from the Bristol Avon Catchment Partnership and the Greggs Foundation, BART is working in partnership with FreshWater Watch, a global programme developed by the environmental NGO, EarthWatch. This charity aims to connect people with science and nature, engaging people in citizen science to build up a wealth of research data collected by volunteers from all over the world. BART are asking individuals and community groups to take part in the WaterBlitz and help to collect at least 250 water quality samples within the Bristol Avon catchment, including Bristol, Bath, South Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and North East Somerset. The samples will measure the concentration of phosphates and nitrates in the rivers, which are naturally occurring chemicals but can be increased by man-made pollution. The data collected during the Bristol Avon WaterBlitz will be used by both FreshWater Watch in their vitally important research into the state of the world's freshwater systems and by BART to plan local improvements.

Harriet Alvis, BART Project Officer, said: “There is a wide network of streams and rivers within the Bristol Avon catchment, and we often see nutrient pollution entering these watercourses and affecting the water quality. This degrades these important ecosystems and the species that inhabit them, therefore it is increasingly important for local people to monitor their local rivers.”

“The WaterBlitz is a great opportunity for people to get actively involved in monitoring their local watercourse and help us to better understand the condition of the water environment and protect it in the future.”

Using the free water testing kit, volunteers can sample their chosen river or stream in the Bristol Avon catchment and upload the results to Freshwater Watch to compare the water quality level to other sites on an interactive results map.

“We’re also encouraging people to show us how they're getting involved by sharing a picture or video of your day sampling on Twitter using #BAWaterBlitz,” added Harriet.
 

FAQ

I cannot log in to the website
When you registered we sent you an email with the subject "FreshWater Watch: Account Details". This email contains your log in information. If you enter an incorrect username or password several time the system will block your account. Please contact us if you have any problems.

How do I get my kit?
We provide a free water testing kit. This will be posted to the address that you provided on your registration form.

How do I enter my results?
We recommend you download the FreshWater Watch app (log in and look under "My Resources"). The app is available for android and iOS mobile phones.

How do I use the app?
Install and open the app on your device. Tap on the menu to upload a record (you may need to swipe the screen to see the menu). If you have any problems, try deleting and reinstalling the app. Use the same log in details that you use for the website.

The app says that FreshWater Watch has stopped
Android Users: Your device should be version 5 or above. Many devices can be updated in Settings > More > About device > Software update > Update now.

Do I have to use the FreshWater Watch app?
No, please download and print the Blitz Datasheet (log in and look under "My Next Steps"). Take the datasheet with you to record your results. When you return home, log in to the website and click "Upload a Record".

If you have any other questions please let us know by emailing water@earthwatch.org.uk