Josh, which of the LaMotte tests are you and the other teachers running?  (My principal interest is bioremediation of polluted waters, especially in the watersheds around the western basin of Lake Erie.)

Who or How is the funding for this initiative taking place by using students collecting samples and giving them to a lab ?

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Are some local governments more interested in the revenue from fines and fees for environmental transgressions than achieving the underlying environmental goals?

Consider, for example, the fees charged to businesses for maintaining impervious surfaces like roofs and parking lots from which storm water or snow melt rushes to city sewers, burdening wastewater treatment plants.  Why aren't those businesses motivated to install rain gardens and porous paving?

Or consider the apparent preference in many cities to fine construction contractors for silt running off bare ground or piles of excavated dirt into storm sewers during rainstorms, clogging the sewers and complicating wastewater treatment processes. 

If contractors were compelled to install silt fencing between the exposed soil and city drains, then, region wide, thousands of tons of silt would be kept out of the sewers.  The willingness of contractors to pay the fines rather than remedy the problem indicates to me that the fines are too low.

In many municipalities, mayors, city managers and council people give loud and frequent lip service to environmental concerns and pass a multitude of resolutions and ordinances, but in the municipal departments where the rubber hits the road, those concerns and resolutions and ordinances often get short shrift.

Too frequently, those who do the legislating seem to think that’s the end of the problem, that their intent will be self-executing.  Either that or the city poobahs are throwing around terms like “environment” and “green” and “water quality” merely as cheap public relations gimmicks.

Adapted from my blog, June 16, 2014:
detroitwatersewerblog.blogspot.com

-- Jim Lang

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here is the link to the editable google map for your student data 

My goal is for this to be a place where we can share resources about Water Quality in our own area.  I would like to create a google map that we all have access to so that we can add data points with our test results.  
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