Managing stormwater is critical to the health of the water bodies that receive it, including the ponds in Roger William Park, which have been identified as being impaired (RIDEM 2007). The PSIC established a water quality monitoring program to assess ambient conditions in the ponds, to document the impacts of ongoing restoration efforts, and to confirm the benefits of green infrastructure as a strategy in stormwater management.
Discreet Water Quality Sampling
The Providence Stormwater Innovation Center works closely with the University of Rhode Island by participating in Watershed Watch, a scientist-led volunteer water quality monitoring program.
Through Watershed Watch, we recruit citizen scientists from the local community to monitor six pond sites in Roger Williams Park. Monitoring is conducted according to the standard URIWW Lake and Ponds monitoring schedule, except we encourage volunteers to complete more intensive weekly DO measurements to better account for stormwater impacts in this urbanized watershed.
Citizen scientists sample weekly for dissolved oxygen and temperature, bi-weekly for chlorophyll-a, and 3 times per year for nutrients, bacteria, alkalinity, and pH.
To participate as a citizen scientist, submit your information at the following url:
Continuous Water Quality Monitoring
Time-dense data and information improves our understanding of hydrology and water quality and can lead to more effective resource management. Continuous monitoring of water quality data captures seasonal, diurnal, and event-driven fluctuations within a water system. Continuous water quality data also improves concentration and load estimates.
The Providence Stormwater Innovation Center, in partnership with URI and the University of New Hampshire, performs continuous monitoring at the inflow and outflow sites for nitrate, phosphate, total phosphate, and fluorescent dissolved organic matter. This data, measured at one-hour intervals, will be coupled with continuous discharge (streamflow) data to calculate load estimates for each water quality parameter.