Archive for the ‘Featured’ Category

Enjoying this Beautiful Day on the Daughter of the Stars

 

I saw a lot of fellow river rats today while I was out collecting the water samples with our summer intern Monica Werner. Early tomorrow morning I will be heading out to Passage Creek in the Elizabeth Furnace Day Use area to collect water samples. When I get back to the lab, I will post the E. coli results for the samples we collected today.

Surprised by lower E. coli levels than expected

While the River was not running exceptionally high, it was moving swiftly, caring debris, silt, and sediment making the water turbid and discolored in most of the areas that we visited yesterday to collect water samples.

Despite this, the E. coli levels on a whole, while elevated, were lower than expected.  At two of the sites, the E. coli levels exceeded the previous Virginia water-quality standard threshold of 235 E. coli colony-forming units per 100 mL of water sample for primary recreational use.

FW14 – South Fork Shenandoah River at Front Royal public boat landing of Luray Ave, Warren County VA., 238.2 MPN of E. coli colony-forming units per 100 mL

FP02 –South Fork Shenandoah River at Newport public boat landing, Page County VA., 248.1 MPN E. coli colony-forming units per 100 mL

FOSR 2021 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 06.15.2021

E. coli levels on the Rise

E. coli levels crept up at all of the sites that we collected water samples from yesterday.  At three of the sites, the E. coli levels exceeded the previous Virginia water-quality standard threshold of 235 E. coli colony-forming units per 100 mL of water sample for primary recreational use.

FW36 – Manassas Run upstream of the confluence with main-stem Shenandoah River, just upstream of the public boat landing, 272.2 MPN of E. coli colony-forming units per 100 mL

FW35 –Main-stem Shenandoah River at Morgan’s Ford low H2O bridge public boat landing below the confluence with Manassas Run, 275.5 MPN E. coli colony-forming units per 100 mL

FSMB – North Fork of the Shenandoah River at Meems Bottom, 435.2 MPN E. coli colony-forming units per 100 mL

FOSR 2021 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 06.10.2021

 

Stream Under Siege Update

These are the bacteria concentration results for the water samples that I collected yesterday from the stream that runs on the westside of Needy Road and from the pond overflow that the stream feeds into.

FOSR Bacteria Concentration Results Needy Rd WV 06.07.2021

To give you a point of reference, previously in Virginia, if a single freshwater grab sample contained E. coli bacteria levels that exceeded 235 colony forming units (CFU) per 100 mL of water samples,  then the water would have been considered unsafe for primary recreational contact. Under the current Virginia Code, effective as of October 2019, for both the State Water Control Board and VA Dept. of Health, there is no longer a single sample criterion or agency responsible to inform the public of potential exposure to elevated E. coli levels in the freshwater streams and rivers in Virginia.

Extra, extra: Bill Howard, with The Downstream Project, was told that the Needy Road pipeline project has been SHUTDOWN. Enforcement, mitigation, and possible legal action being discussed.

Stream Under siege in Martinsburg WV

Today I accompanied Bill Howard, with The Downstream Project, to a small stream off Needy Road in Martinsburg WV to collect water samples to measure the E. coli levels. This stream has recently been exposed to various man-made contamination stressors. A few weeks ago, there was a sewage overflow spill that contaminated the stream. Now there is pipeline drilling occurring along Needy Road. The slurry from this drilling is being discharged directly into this small stream that eventually feeds into the Opequon Creek.

 

FOSR’s 2021 Summer E. coli Results through 06.03.2021

These are the E. coli results for the water samples collected yesterday, Thursday, June 03, 2021.

FOSR 2021 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results through 06.03.2021

The thing that was most noticeable yesterday when we were out collecting the water samples at the various sites was the low water levels for this time of year.

Previously in Virginia, if a single freshwater grab sample contained E. coli bacteria levels that exceeded 235 CFUs then the water would have been considered unsafe for primary recreational contact. Under the current Virginia Code, effective as of October 2019, for both the State Water Control Board and VA Dept. of Health, there is no longer any agency responsible to inform the public of potential exposure to elevated E. coli levels in the freshwater streams and rivers in Virginia!

The Friends of the Shenandoah River have been providing this accredited E. coli data to you so that you can make an informed decision of the potential related health risks before engaging in primary recreational use activities in the river.

Only with YOUR SUPPORT can the Friends of the Shenandoah River continue to provide this vital service. Please support us by making a donation today. https://fosr.org/join-us/join/

Only with YOUR SUPPORT

You may have seen the recent article, “Environmental group: Use Shenandoah River with caution” by Mickey Powell in

the Winchester Star. According to the article, one should think twice before jumping in the Shenandoah River to cool off. For the past four summers, the Friends of the Shenandoah River have been measuring E. coli levels at public access sites along the Shenandoah River. Soon after the E. coli results are determined, we make this information available to all via our website, www.fosr.org, and our Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100015330303150

We have been providing this accredited E. coli data to you so that you can make an informed decision of the potential related health risks before engaging in primary recreational use activities in the river.

Only with YOUR SUPPORT can the Friends of the Shenandoah River continue to provide this vital service. Please support us by making a donation today. https://fosr.org/join-us/join/

Welcoming Summer 2021: FOSR’s 1st Summer E. coli Results

The thunderstorms that passed through Wednesday afternoon made for a beautiful day on Thursday to be out collecting the water samples for FOSR’s first 2021 Summer Quantitative E. coli Test Results at public recreational use sites on the Main Stem, South Fork, and North Fork of the Shenandoah River and the Opequon Creek.

Unfortunately, at this time, we are not able to include all of the sites that we monitored as in previous summers due to the lack of funding necessary to provide this vital resource to you.  If you wish to support FOSR’s Summer E. coli testing program, please donate via PayPal https://fosr.org/join-us/join/

or send a check to Friends of the Shenandoah River                                  1460 University Dr, Winchester VA 22601

The Friends of the Shenandoah River is a 501c3  not-for-profit organization, all donations are tax-deductible.

FOSR 2021 Summer Quantitative E. coli Concentration Results 05.27.2021

 

Crucial public awareness and comment opportunity on the water-quality assessment methods used by DEQ for Virginia’s waters

There is a very important opportunity for the public to submit comments on Virginia’s draft 2022 Water Quality Assessment Guidance manual through February 18, 2021.  
 
A public webinar to review updates to the 2022 Water Quality Assessment Guidance Manual will be held on Feb. 11, 2021, from 2-4 p.m. Link to register for the webinar:  https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/1154243528623510029 
 
The draft manual contains the assessment procedures and methods for the development of Virginia’s 2022 Integrated Report.  Virginia’s 2022 Water Quality Assessment Guidance Manual contains the assessment procedures and methods to be used for the development of Virginia’s 2022 §305(b)/ §303(d) Integrated Report. The guidance seeks to address all key elements of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency 2006 Assessment Guidance and subsequent updates current to December 2020, in addition to the assessment methodology for Chesapeake Bay Water Quality Standards.

Only with your support

This past year has seen a monumental increase in the use of public natural areas. The community has come to rely on the weekly E. coli concentration results updates from FOSR’s annual summer E. coli testing program at public access and recreational sites on the Shenandoah River. The goal of this program is to provide frequent, real-time accredited E. coli concentration results for river recreation users to make an informed decision about potential associated health risks when recreating in the areas of the river tested. The weekly quantitative E. coli concentration results are available to the public on both the FOSR website and Facebook page. The public’s interest in this program has been overwhelmingly positive. As a reminder of potential health risks when recreating in high flow, muddy, and/or turbid waters, the FOSR coined the slogan, “When it’s Brown, Turn Around”. Many times, when out collecting the water samples, FOSR staff is greeted with river goers calling out, “When it’s Brown, Turn Around”

Only with your support can the Friends of the Shenandoah River continue to provide this vital service. Please support us by making a donation today.  https://fosr.org/join-us/join/

Friends of the Shenandoah River   1460 University Drive   Winchester, VA 22601

 
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