The bigger picture. It’s what many of us are aiming to see, whether leading on a project at work, or making personal decisions at home.
FreshWater Watch is also aiming to see the bigger picture so that we can understand how to preserve the water that we all rely on. We’re putting together a giant jigsaw puzzle, and you, our dedicated FreshWater Watchers, have the pieces that we need.
It’s likely that you’ve used Geographical Information Systems (GIS) before even if you haven’t heard of them. Google Maps and Google Earth, for instance, are GIS. On Google Earth, you are shown a satellite image, and you can click on options to add different ‘layers’, such as country boundaries, roads, or waterbodies.
For FreshWater Watch, we can do the same with your data. We can take your freshwater quality data, and add other layers such as land use, population and precipitation.
As we build up whose layers of information, we can start to look for patters and links between the different layers, and from this we can draw out what is driving the patterns in our water quality data
Using this combined local ‘micro scale’ and satellite ‘macro scale’ data, we can improve our ability to predict how water bodies – particularly still water bodies - will behave over time.
Unlike a normal jigsaw puzzle, this ‘bigger picture’ can keep on growing as you send us more and more data. The more information you send us, the clearer connections we can make between water quality and the geographical context of the waterbodies you test. This is hugely important for our understanding of how to preserve them.
Over to you
Keep testing your water and uploading your data. We need your information!
Not yet a FreshWater Watcher? Find out how to get involved here
Next: K is for (Everything Including the) Kitchen Sink
A is for Alien Invasions; B is for the Biggest!; C is for Crickets in your lunchbox; D is for Data. Or is it datum?; E is for Eighty Litres of Water in an Orange; F is for Ferruginous Pochard; G is for Going, Going, Gone?; H is for Heroes; I is for Industrial Revolution; J is for Jigsaw Puzzles; K is for (Everything including the) Kitchen Sink; L is for Life itself; M is for Microbeads; N is for Namedropping