Why Sample Water Quality?

Why is it important?

Let the organizations of the LaRosa Partnership Program tell you:


"We are the best watchdogs of our local rivers. Through provisions in the Federal Clean Water Act, the State of Vermont’s Department of Environmental Conservation carries out various water quality sampling efforts in some sections of rivers. While this annual monitoring is highly valuable, it does not capture data on all river reaches, not does it necessarily pinpoint sources of pollution. There is a vital role for citizen scientists to keep a close and relatively frequent eye on the many reaches of streams and rivers that would not otherwise be monitored." - Addison County River Watch Collaborative 

"Water quality monitoring plays an important role in keeping the public informed about water quality issues and promoting stewardship of our watershed. Furthermore, this valuable data has the power to influence water quality improvements and shape public policy." - Friends of the Winooski River

"Why do we sample?

  • Missisquoi Bay contributes over 200 metric tons per year of non-point source phosphorous to Lake Champlain, accounting for more than any other segment of the lake.
  • A 75% reduction in P loading will be needed to meet the new TMDL water quality standards.
  • Sampling will help us track our progress as we implement changes across our landscape aimed at curbing non-point source pollution. Individual projects to address localized erosion, agricultural runoff, and stormwater are small fractions of a very large whole. Sampling can give us a “big picture” to measure the cumulative success of our efforts.
  • Sampling results inform decisions about where to direct our efforts." - Missisquoi River Basin Association

"Every activity we perform on land has a direct impact on habitat and our streams, rivers, and lakes. Whether it be fertilizing your lawn, not picking up after your dog, or developing rural and urban spaces, our actions affect the ecologic, economic, and recreational value of our land and waterways." - LaPlatte Watershed Partnership

"Summer is the time of year that folks flock to the water to enjoy swimming, tubing, boating, fishing, lounging and all sorts of recreational activities.  It's important to know the health of your waters." - Southeastern Vermont Watershed Association