MONTEREY BAY SANCTUARY CITIZENS WATERSHED MONITORING NETWORK
COALITION PLANS FIRST ANNUAL MONTEREY BAY SANCTUARY "SNAPSHOT DAY"
Local Volunteers Will Celebrate Earth Day By Testing the Waters in Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary's Watersheds
On April 22, 2000, over one hundred volunteers will celebrate Earth Day by participating in a one-day sanctuary-wide citizen watershed monitoring event: Monterey Bay Snapshot Day 2000.
Monterey Bay Snapshot Day 2000 is being planned by a coalition of local environmental organizations, schools, government agencies, and concerned citizens. The goal of the event is to get area citizens, from students to surfers to local officials, armed with test tubes, thermometers, and cameras and out into the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary's eleven major watersheds, to monitor and document the quality of water bodies from San Mateo County to San Luis Obispo County.
Monterey Bay Snapshot Day 2000 volunteers will visit publicly accessible monitoring sites to test air and water temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, conductivity, and take photos. The Surfrider Foundation will monitor ocean sites. Water samples collected by volunteers will be sent to local labs for further analysis. The data collected will then be compiled into a report that will present a "snapshot" of water quality for the watersheds draining into the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. The data will help raise community awareness about water quality and nonpoint source pollution in the waterways that drain to the Sanctuary.
Snapshot Day 2000 is designed to increase public awareness of the water quality issues affecting Sanctuary watersheds, and to emphasize the importance of water quality monitoring and the key role volunteer monitors play in our area. Although monitoring is a critical component of water quality protection, collecting data on the nation's thousands of rivers, streams, lakes, tributaries, and beaches is a task beyond the staff and budget of any government agency. Less than 10% of California's rivers and streams are monitored regularly. In the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary area, local citizens are helping to fill the monitoring gaps. Trained volunteers monitor local water bodies and in the process, become better informed about the value of the area's waters and how they can help protect water quality.
Monterey Bay Snapshot Day 2000 is being organized as part of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Citizen Watershed Monitoring Network - a project of the Center for Marine Conservation and the Coastal Watershed Council in association with the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary's Water Quality Protection Program, and in coordination with the Regional Monitoring Program of the Central Coastal Regional Water Quality Control Board.
Volunteers will attend kick-off events in San Mateo, Monterey and Santa Cruz counties on the morning of April 22nd before heading out to perform monitoring.
LOCAL MEDIA AND PHOTO OPPORTUNITIES:
San Mateo County:
Santa Cruz County:
The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary is the largest of the nation's 12 marine sanctuaries, encompassing over 5,000 square miles of ocean along the Central California Coast. Established in 1992, the Sanctuary's Water Quality Protection Program is a coalition of 27 public and private entities working to enhance and protect the Sanctuary's unique and valuable watersheds. Information on the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary may be found at http://montereybay.nos.noaa.gov
The Coastal Watershed Council, formed in September 1995, is a public education non-profit. CWC advocates for the preservation and protection of coastal watersheds through establishment of community-based watershed stewardship programs and work in partnerships with schools, community organizations and local government.
The Center for Marine Conservation is the largest national nonprofit organization committed solely to protecting ocean environments and conserving the global abundance and diversity of marine life through science-based advocacy, research, and public education, as well as informed citizen participation. Headquartered in Washington, DC, CMC has regional offices in California, Florida, and Virginia and field offices in Alaska, Maine, Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz, CA, and the Florida Keys.