Monitoring: Defining Objectives and Sample Design,
ARMY ENGINEER WATERWAYS EXPERIMENT STATION VICKSBURG MS
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The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and other federal and state agencies are currently active in the acquisition of water quality data for the purpose of defining and documenting water quality conditions in this nations lakes, reservoirs, and rivers, and as a means for assessing various potential ameliorative activities. While highly variable between and within agencies, regulations requiring the collection of water quality data seldom prescribe the manner in which data are to be collected. In most cases, those delegated this responsibility must apply expertise gained from a variety of technical and academic backgrounds. The result is often a lack of consistency. Problems of adequacy of the sampling program are also frequent. While accentuated by the fiscal realities of tight budgets, these problems frequently stem from a poor sample design. The Environmental and Water Quality Operational Studies EWQOS Program was designed to address water quality conditions in several reservoirs. Realizing the complex nature of these large, river-fed lakes, considerable effort was expended on evaluating methods for designing sampling programs that were cost-effective and statistically-defendable. Preliminary results of these evaluations have been reported, and two EWQOS Technical Reports are in preparation.