Tag Archives: Suwannee Riverkeeper

Reconstitute Harmful Algal Bloom Task Forces?

Water quality is an issue in the Florida Senate race, allowing critics of the candidates’ proposals to raise real solutions.

One candidate:

In August, [Florida Senator Bill] Nelson co-introduced legislation with U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., that would direct the federal Interagency Task Force on Harmful Algal Blooms to study the causes and consequences of algae in Lake Okeechobee and around Florida’s south and southwestern coasts.

NOAA: cynaobacteria in Lake Okeechobee
Image: NOAA, 9 September 2018, in Cyanobacteria bloom continues, by Katrina Elsken, Glades County Democrat, 19 September 2018.

The other candidate:

In a letter Thursday to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, [Rick] Scott urged Continue reading

California court requires higher ag. runoff controls

If California can do it, so can Florida. The petition deadline for FDEP’s Basin Management Action Plans (BMAPs) got pushed back to January 2019, so we shall see.

Sara Rubin, Monterey County Weekly, 20 September 2018, Victory for Monterey Coastkeeper as court rules regulations for ag runoff fall short,

Even California’s water quality law, the Porter-Cologne Act, recognizes the challenge. A 2004 addendum about nonpoint source pollution put it this way: “Current land use management practices that have resulted in nonpoint source pollution have a long and complicated physical, economic and political history… Therefore, it is expected that it will take a significant amount of time for the [regional water boards] to approve or endorse nonpoint source control implementation programs.”


Photo: Nic Coury, “Otter Project Director Steve Shimek stands near the Monterey County Water Resources Agency’s Blanco Drain, which conveys ag runoff exceeding state water quality standards to the Salinas River,” in Court slams Central Coast farm runoff rules as too weak, orders water quality improvements, by Sara Rubin, Monterey County Weekly, 14 August 2015.

That time, according to the Court of Appeal for California’s Third District, has come. A Sept. 18 decision Continue reading

WWALS Cleanup at Sheboggy Boat Ramp, US 82, Alapaha River 2018-09-09

Gretchen took some pictures at the cleanup at Sheboggy. Others took pictures of the upstream paddle; probably we’ll post some of them later.

A dynamic group, Ready

Continue reading

WWALS at Berrien County Harvest Festival 2018-09-29

Join WWALS back again at the eighth annual Berrien County Harvest Festival in downtown Nashville, Georgia. Music, art show, craft and food venders, featuring The Puppies of Penzance.

When: 9AM – 3PM, Saturday, September 29, 2018

Where: Downtown Courthouse Square, Nashville, GA 31639

Free: No entrance fee.

Event: facebook

Poster, 2018 Berrien County Harvest Festival
Flyer: Berrien County Chamber of Commerce.

Berrien County PR, unknown date, 2018 Berrien County Harvest Festival,

Harvest Festival activities will also include Continue reading

Followup water quality data after big Valdosta 2018 spills 2018-09-21

Here is (at least some of) the water quality testing data Valdosta was required to collect after its major spills of June in the Withlacoochee River basin and August in the Alapaha River basin. Maybe Valdosta is right that neither of these spills got into waterways, but something sure did, according to this data. Curiously, in both cases the worst fecal coliform readings were upstream from the spill location.

Mud Creek WTP after the 13 August 2018 spill

Below at Johnson Road, Mud Creek WTP
Downstream at Johnson Road on Mud Creek from the Mud Creek WTP after the August spill

There’s only one datapoint (the yellow dot) on that graph below the Georgia safe limit for fecal coliform of 200 colony forming units per 100 milliliters of water (cfu/100 ml). You’d think it would be better upstream, right? Continue reading

Georgia sewage spills from January 2015 through 2018-09-18

Here is every spill reported by all the large wastewater permits in the state of Georgia since the beginning of 2015 through this Tuesday, September 18, 2018. It includes spills in the Suwannee River Basin you probably didn’t know about.

If people downstream want to do something about wastewater coming from Georgia, this data suggests two things: insist Georgia publish spill reports online the same day like Florida and Alabama already do. And help fund WWALS water quality testing so we can find out what’s going on and when.

2015-2018, Valdosta
Just spills with a Valdosta address from 2015 on.

WWALS Science Committee Chair Tom Potter extracted and sorted every spill with an address in Valdosta since the beginning of 2015: Spill-Detail-sorted_Valdosta_2015–2018-09-19. See also web version of this data.

I’ve been asking the City of Valdosta for a list of their spills and locations since at least 2015, and I’ve been collecting reports ad hoc since before then. Finally, we have this list, but not from Valdosta. We had to Continue reading

Stream Monitoring after Lowndes County Val-Tech Road Spill 2017-09-23

Here is Lowndes County’s (not Valdosta’s) stream monitoring data for a year after its September 23, 2017 raw sewage spill into a ditch that goes to the Withlacoochee River. The data show often worse water quality upstream than downstream. This is a good illustration of why WWALS is starting a water quality testing program.

Graphs, Below at GA 133

These graphs are in Water Reporter, where I put the data under the Suwannee Riverkeeper group. The first two graphs are from below the spill, downstream on the Withlacoochee River at GA 133 (St. Augustine Road).

Graphs, Below at GA 133

Fecal Coliform, Below at GA 133

The other graphs show nothing unusual for blackwater tannic acid rivers. This is the interesting graph, Continue reading

Training, Water Quality Testing, Pictures 2018-09-16

Thanks to Julie Shutters of Golden Triangle R&D for coming down from Sylvester to Valdosta, GA to do Georgia Adopt-A-Stream training for WWALS.

(No, we haven’t forgotten about Florida. We’re just starting with the biggest problem area.)

Class

[Julie Shutters, Ronnie Thomas, Erica McLelland, Shirley Kokidko, Joanne A. Wardell, Gretchen Quarterman, Bobby McKenzie, John S. Quarterman (hat)]
Julie Shutters, Ronnie Thomas, Erica McLelland, Shirley Kokidko, Joanne A. Wardell, Gretchen Quarterman, Bobby McKenzie, John S. Quarterman (hat)

Continue reading

Karen and Tom Johnson Collage

Karen and Tom Johnson travelled many a time three or four hours from Pine Mountain, Georgia, to paddle with WWALS on our outings. Some of us are planning to go to Pine Mountain this Saturday:

HEAR YE! HEAR YE!
Memorial Service/Funeral for Karen Toms Johnson:

11:00 A.M., Saturday, September 22, 2018.
1st UMC Pine Mountain, Georgia.
Rev. Liza Marler, officiating pastor.
Luncheon to follow with Karen Storytelling emcee’d by T3.
Memorial Service attendees are STRONGLY encouraged to attend the luncheon.

When: Tuesday-Friday 18-21 September 2018

Where: Post your pictures online here.

Event: facebook, meetup

Here is the obituary Tom wrote for Karen.

We would like to take with us a collage of pictures of Karen and Tom on WWALS outings (or elsewhere). Please post your pictures here (on this blog post, facebook event, etc.) or email them to wwalswatershed@gmail.com.

Here are some examples:


Photo: Bret Wagenhorst, of Tom and Karen Johnson, winners, farthest, BIG Little River Paddle Race 29 April 2017.

Continue reading

Naylor Boat Ramp status @ LCC 2018-09-10

The Naylor Boat Ramp should finally be complete within a few weeks, said Project Manager Chad McLeod at Monday’s Lowndes County Commission Work Session. It will be interesting to see what paddlers report back from that site after yesterday’s paddle starting there as part of the Alapaha Quest to paddle in segments the entire Alapaha River Water Trail.


Status of Naylor Boat Ramp by Chad McLeod in LAKE video @ LCC 2018-09-10

What Chad McLeod said Monday morning, 10 September 2018, transcribed from Continue reading