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Real-Time Water Quality Monitoring

Moves Closer To Reality

Phase II Of H2NOW Chicago Kicks Off With Expanded Advisory Committee

Phase II of Current’s largest and most public demonstration project, H2NOW Chicago, kicked off with both existing and new partners eager to deepen their engagement with this real-time water quality monitoring project. Broad and meaningful stakeholder engagement has been a hallmark of this project, and meeting the 2020 Our Great Rivers Vision of measuring and communicating real-time water quality data in the Chicago River depends on input from a wide range or technical and programmatic partners and volunteers.

Key recommendations from the meeting included:

  • Continuing to think about new ways to recognize partners and their contributions to H2NOW
  • Clearly communicating project goals and refining key audiences and messages
  • Continuing to align H2NOW goals with the UN SDGs, and other relevant regional/national/global goals and action frameworks
  • Considering how to incorporate statistical uncertainty and non-scientific metrics into the assessment of microbial water quality
  • Improving transparency and documentation as they relate to the data acquisition and interpretation, so the processes can be more easily shared with and replicated by others
  • Refining the risk assessment and considering the implications of using different indicators
  • Considering other ideas to expand public surveying and outreach
  • Discussing how H2NOW and similar projects initiated by Current can help stimulate wider adoption of the underlying technologies

Next Steps:

  • Current will convene smaller topical groups to discuss data standardization, data interpretation, and presentation
  • Current will provide monthly updates on the project's progress
  • Partners will send Current a list of their upcoming event ideas - either those they have planned or ideas for joint events - for the 2020 recreational season
  • The next Advisory Committee Meeting will take place on March 12th from 9:00am-10:30am CST, hosted by the Chicago Community Trust
  • Stay tuned for the real-time data launch in late May 2020!

Special thanks to Howard, Libby and the entire team at ELPC for providing the space and the technology to bring everyone together, in person and remotely. As a small team, Current depends on these kinds of neighborly partnerships and we’re very grateful.

If you would like to become involved with H2NOW on a personal or organizational-level, have space to host a future Current event, or would like more information on how to support our work, please reach out to George Brigandi.

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