|Posted by Michael Brooks on October 3, 2021 at 12:40 AM|
This is the press release, published by the Morgan Messenger in their Sep 29, 2021 edition
The construction of the US Route Bypass involves major earth disturbances and the removal of 300 acres of trees. Warm Springs Watershed Association (WSWA) and WV Rivers Coalition (WV Rivers) have partnered to monitor potential construction impacts on Warm Springs Run.
State regulations require construction projects to control erosion with silt fences and sediment ponds. Erosion control failures can result in increased runoff and sediment deposits in the stream. Increased runoff and sedimentation in the stream have the potential to erode stream banks, harm aquatic life, and exacerbate flooding issues downstream.
WV Rivers, in partnership with Trout Unlimited, developed a program with funding from the WV Department of Environmental Protection to train citizens to monitor large-scale construction activities. This new partnership will provide WSWA with the tools, equipment, and training needed to monitor construction activities and potential water quality impacts. “Our citizen monitoring program equips residents with the knowledge and tools they need to help protect the stream they care about,” says Autumn Crowe, Staff Scientist and Interim Program Director for WV Rivers.
The monitoring program will include training on the use of WV Stream Watch, an app to help WSWA volunteers report erosion control problems. WV Rivers relays information submitted through the app to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection. “In the past, there has been little or late follow-up to reports individuals have made about violations,” said WSWA President Kate Lehman. “We welcome assistance from a larger organization in reporting what we observe.”
WSWA supports the construction of the bypass, but strives to insure that the erosion control measures mandated by the WVDEP are properly installed and maintained to prevent damage to the Run.
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