Watershed Bill of Rights
- You have the right to clean water.
- You have the right to know the kinds of pollutants that affect clean water and understand the
sources of those pollutants.
- You have the right to report sources of illegal pollutants to the correct authority.
Clean water not only is essential for all living things, but also improves quality of life and saves taxpayer dollars. That’s right, clean water saves you money! It is both difficult and expensive to remove pollutants from water to use it for drinking, manufacturing, energy production, etc. As a watershed citizen and a taxpayer, you have the right to report water polluting activities that you see. Learn how through the Friends of Deckers Creek Watershed Bill of Rights.
With particular focus on the potential impacts from natural gas drilling on watersheds, the Watershed Bill of Rights program strives to protect the Deckers Creek watershed through the prevention, reduction and elimination of water pollution by educating local citizens on water polluting activities, the rights of citizens and landowners to report these activities, and how to do so. The program includes three main components: a multi media campaign, community education symposiums, and a Citizen Scientist monitoring initiative. For the multi-media campaign, FODC has partnered with local marketing company InnerAction Media to develop and deliver a variety of media resources promoting the Watershed Bill of Rights program, including an informational and database website, television and radio public service announcements, outreach information notices, online advertising, and social media platforms. Throughout the year FODC will host quarterly community symposiums focused on the potential environmental impacts of Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling. Each symposium will be followed by a Citizen Scientist training that will educate and empower citizens with the knowledge and equipment necessary to monitor their local streams for potential pollutants related to the extraction of natural gas throughout the watershed. The Watershed Bill of Rights is funded by an Environmental Justice grant through the US EPA.
How Can YOU Help?
Know what types of surface water pollution are illegal and how to report issues. You can learn more about illegal dumps, littering, untreated sewage, stream/wetland dredge and fill, construction stormwater, oil and gas drilling and more on the Deckers Creek Dog web site.
Know who to contact or use the Deckers Creek Dog application when you see surface water pollution issues in your watershed. You can call or submit web reports anonymously.
Become a Citizen Scientist.
FODC is looking for volunteers to become Citizen Scientists. We will train and equip you to monitor local streams for potential pollutants related to the extraction of natural gas in the area and to submit this data to a central, online database. These data are very important to indicate baseline stream conditions in order to accurately document pollution sources. Citizen Scientist volunteers will learn how to calibrate monitoring equipment and receive their own kit to monitor a specific stream location every other week on their own time. They will learn how to recognize potential pollution sources using stream water chemistry measurements and visual assessments of the stream and surrounding area, along with who to call to report these issues. Citizen Scientist volunteers also will be trained in entering their data online.