The Water Institute were delighted to have Evelyn Cusack and Séamus Walsh – Heads of Forecasting and Climatology & Observations Divisions at Met Éireann respectively – attend the September Water Café on DCU Glasnevin Campus.
Ms Cusack and Mr Walsh spoke at the launch of the WaterBlitz citizen science project, run in coordination with Earthwatch and sponsored by RBC Dublin. It aims to help members of the public test their local waterways from the 20th – 23rd September. The Water Institute sends out free water-testing phosphate and nitrate kits to those who sign up. The citizen scientists then upload their results to DCU via the internet, which will allow a snapshot of the water quality across the greater Dublin area to be seen.
Prof Fiona Regan, Director of the Water Institute, hopes that the survey of our freshwater can give us a clear picture of the health of our water, detailing how clean or polluted it is. It’s vital that county-wide surveys like this are conducted in order to ensure water safety and direct conservation efforts.
After a discussion about the background and current research of the Water Institute, Ms Cusack and Mr Walsh addressed a fully packed water café, to whom they spoke about meteorology and climate science. They noted that we don’t pay as much heed to our waterways as we should and that hopefully the WaterBlitz can change attitudes regarding it.
Dr Susan Hegarty concluded the talks, noting the promise of the recent BACKDROP citizen science project which recently began on the river Liffey and already has more than 50 river users signed up.
If you’re interested in becoming a citizen scientist and want to know more about our upcoming WaterBlitz, just click here.