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Volunteers needed to monitor health of lakes, streams, weekly

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is recruiting Minnesotan volunteers who are able to visit a designated lake or stream weekly during the summer to monitor the health of the lake or stream.

More than 1,400 Minnesotans already track the health of their favorite lake or stream through the Citizen Lake Monitoring Program or the Citizen Stream Monitoring Program.

These volunteers measure water clarity in their lake or stream weekly throughout the summer months, using simple equipment provided by the MPCA.

Water clarity, or transparency, is an indicator of the health of a lake or stream. The MPCA uses water clarity data to track water quality trends and to make decisions on watershed protection and restoration.

For some lakes and streams, data collected by volunteers is the only data available.

Some volunteers have participated in the MPCA's water monitoring program for more than 35 years.

Long-term volunteers report that monitoring has given them a new way of learning about the lake or stream they love, and volunteers enjoy sharing their knowledge with neighbors who also care about clean water.

All equipment and training for new volunteers is provided by the MPCA.

To become a volunteer or learn more about the programs, call 1-800-657-3864.