Florida has had a rich history of agriculture, rerouting water, and releasing freshwater into sensitive estuaries. In 2016, funding to sample recreational beaches in Palm Beach County was cut, increasing the need for water quality information throughout the county. In response, the Palm Beach County Chapter began their Blue Water Task Force program.
The chapter has just joined forces with Jupiter High School's “Green Schools Club” to run their Blue Water Task Force Program with the goal of providing information to the public. Volunteers from the chapter collect samples at three locations weekly or bi-weekly, and the samples are brought to lab established at Jupiter High School to be processed and read by students. The program is led by Russ Redman of the Palm Beach County Chapter, and Kimberly Jalm, a faculty advisor at Jupiter High School.
Not only is this a great partnership that increases the availability of water quality information, it is a great opportunity for children to learn more about water testing, why clean water matters, and how they can positively impact the health of our beaches.