Monitoring Results

 

We have a team of volunteers who are carrying out monthly sampling of river water quality along the River Avon from Bidford, through Offenham, Evesham, Fladbury, Cropthorne, Lower Moor, Wyre Piddle, Pershore, Eckington and on to Defford.   Our sampling kits are supplied by the Angling Trust through the Girling Angling Society who fish the left bank stretch of the River Avon at Fladbury.  The data is captured in the Epicollect app and contibutes to the Angling Trust’s Water Quality Monitoring Network (WQMN) national database which is being used to influence water quality nationally.  We also plan to use the data captured to raise awareness locally of the water quality of the River Avon. 

Samplers will also note:

  • Water levels
  • Flow rates
  • Presence of algal blooms
  • Presence of pollution

Click here to view the data we have collected to date ARAG Water Quality Monitoring Results June 2024.xlsx

Below is a sample of data collected from October 2022 until August 2023 in a limited number of sites.

Phosphates

Standards for Phosphorus in UK Rivers were introduced under the Water Framework Directive (WFD) and associated Regs/Directions in 2009 and were updated in 2015. The standards are site-specific and depend upon the altitude and alkalinity of the site.  The standards for good ecological status (close to natural) in Rivers are broadly in the range 0.077 – 0.306 ppm of Orthophosphate (PO43-), as annual means. This is as measured by the Hanna Phosphate Colorimeter.

Electrical Conductivity

Significantly elevated electrical conductivity can indicate that pollution has entered the river. A measure of electrical conductivity cannot tell you what the pollutant is, but it can help identify that there is a problem that may harm invertebrates and/or fish. Electrical conductivity may be high in a river without any visible effects on the clarity of the river water. Any human activity that adds inorganic, charged chemicals to a river will alter the electrical conductivity. For example, electrical conductivity may be higher in a river downstream of a sewage treatment works due to chemicals such as chloride and phosphate from household products.

Nitrates

There are no ecological status standards for Nitrogen in Rivers.  The Environment Agency’s approach is to focus on Phosphate as the main cause of river eutrophication and the nutrient they are most able to reduce to levels that will improve the ecology. There is a standard for Lakes and Reservoirs, which is 0.75 – 1.5 mg/l (ppm).  Natural levels of Nitrate in freshwater are typically low, generally well below 5 ppm.

Temperature

 

“River Avon at Lower Evesham was among the worst affected location in the county with five chemicals found in the river.

Chemicals included pharmaceuticals such as Ibuprofen and “forever chemicals” that do not break down naturally.”

Worcester News June 2023 link here

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