A CIESE Collaborative Project

Fall 2002 Final Reports

Rand Preparatory School

Clarkston Homeschoolers

Carmel College Whitten Middle School
Emery High School Bay-Arenac ISD Career Center
Powell Middle School Harold Wilson Middle School

Pacific Horizons School

 

Rand Preparatory School

Rand School Data
Letter of Introduction and information
Student Pictures and Descriptions
Student Pictures and Descriptions
Student Pictures and Descriptions

 

Clarkston Homeschoolers

I was pleased to discover that the water quality in Knox Lake is much better than I originally thought. The Nitrate level is good meaning that the protein level in the water is at and acceptable level for aquatic creatures to live. Phosphates are also at an acceptable level, which will also help keep plants and
animals healthy. The pH level is optimal for supporting aquatic life and the turbidity level in the water is excellent meaning that there is a normal level of bottom feeding fish and boat traffic is being kept to a minimum as to not disturb particles in the bottom of these shallow waters.

However, the dissolved oxygen level is very low, even though the Biological Oxygen Demand is still at an acceptable level meaning the bacteria in the water and from decaying plants, caused by lack of water, and Coliform bacteria (animal fecal matter), which Knox Lake tested positive for, are not consuming to
much of the oxygen but this could get worse. A step in fixing this problem would be to keep the water in Knox Lake flowing through Ellis Creek so that bacteria cannot grow. I intend to look into this matter and continue testing the lake in the future to see if the situation has improved.

 

Carmel College

Test Site: Lake Pupuke: - Name: Pupukemoana "overflowing lake"
Location: Centre of Takapuna, North Shore, Auckland, New Zealand
Type of Volcano: Caldera
Age: 140000 - 150000 years old
Depth: 34m
Introduction
Lake Pupuke began with small eruptive activity at generating thin magma flows. Magma withdrawing back down the vent of the volcano would have formed the large collapsed crater. Larger eruptions then expelled ash, creating a low tuff ring around the crater. On the areas just west of the volcano, the frothy
lava expelled formed a small scoria mound. The volcano later filled with fresh water to become the Lake Pupuke we know today.

The current water quality of Lake Pupuke is quite good, but recently it has shown signs of deteriorating. It is very important deterioration does not occur as it would be very difficult to reverse the process. A deterioration could cause concern for the flora and fauna, and because Lake Pupuke is very popular
for recreational use. Explanations as to why the water quality is deteriorating may include sewer overflow; air pollution from motor vehicles, fires, and industrial discharges; reduction in riparian vegetation; urban land development; reduction in catchment vegetation and poor stormwater systems resulting
in overflows. [ North Shore City Report]

Here in the Southern Hemisphere, we have had a wet winter, and although air temperatures are increasing with the onset of spring, rainfall levels are still high. This could have an affect on the water clarity and dissolved ion concentrations of nitrates in particular, as they are very soluble.


Aim: Our aim is to monitor the water quality of Lake Pupuke so we will be aware of any changes and be able to act accordingly.

Hypothesis: Nitrate levels will be higher than acceptable.  [NB. An acceptable range of nitrate ( NO3-) , 10mgL- 1]

Method: Data was collected in the suggested way on; water clarity, nitate ion concentration. PH, phosphate ion concentration, water and air temperatures, dissolved oxygen, conductivity

Results:
Date 18.10.02 27-3-02 Acceptable range
pH 7 7 6 - 9
phosphate conc. 0.15ppm 0.5ppm < 0.1mgL-1
nitrate conc. 2ppm 0.5ppm < 10mgL-1
nitrite conc. <0.15ppm <0.15ppm
temp. air 18.1C - Spring 26.5 ?C Late Summer
temp. water 16.9C 20.5
dissolved oxygen 9.2 milligrams per Litre 5milligrams per Litre > 5 mgL-1
clarity 100% 91%
conductivity 283ppm na


Discussion
As can be seen from the results table although the nitrate ion concentration is greater than it was in March, both sets of data fall within the acceptable parameters. [ www.waicare.org.nz] This means that our hypothesis is incorrect.
 
However, regular monitoring should be carried out as the nitrate ion concentration has increased and one off sampling is quite inaccurate. This should avoid eutrophic conditions developing.   In participating in this project, we have found that concern for water quality is worldwide and that environmental protection is not someone elses problem. We all need to work together.

We enjoyed using new data logging equipment to gather information on water quality and are looking forward to using the new software programme to analyse regularly collected data.   It feels as if the school is moving into the 21st century It will also be interesting to see if there are seasonal fluctuations.

We enjoyed using our skills in a real life application and being able to visit the lake. it was neat to work by the Lake, especially when there are ducklings, cygnets and baby Pukeko, theyre so cute. Youve just got to avoid the mother birds and the . on the ground

Year 12 Environmental Science Group

 


Whitten Middle School

Final Report:
This is the final report from the Global Water Sampling Project of the eighth grade honors class at Whitten Middle School in Jackson, Mississippi. Our class performed all ten tests, and each student group became an expert on their assigned test or tests. Since we had to do this extra research, we learned new
things about words of which we had barely heard. Terms such as turbidity and BOD can now be a part of our vocabulary.

Our tests were conducted using chemical reaction tests, color tests, specialized equipment for turbidity, and collection nets for macro-invertebrates. We learned how to really use the scientific method and the importance of following directions in using laboratory techniques.   From all of our testing, we found that our water is relatively clean and can support good populations of aquatic animal and plant life. Even the swamp that we thought was awfully dirty turned out to be unpolluted and could support lots of aquatic life.
One of our lessons learned was that we should have done a lot of our research before we went out to the test sites. Since we performed five measurements for each test, we did not really think about the extra time we needed at each site. We had to bring some water samples back to our classroom to perform tests because we ran out of time at the site. The solution would have been to have planned to stay longer at each site. We collected almost all of our samples from the waters edge at each site. We would have liked to have arranged for a boat in order to get some samples from the deeper areas.

We gave a presentation to the School Board about our participation in the Global Water Sampling Project.
 

We are attaching the data from our final results.
 

Lake
T emp ( C ) 21.4
PH 7.5
DO (ppm) 4
Nitrates (ppm) 0
Phos (ppm) 1
BOD (ppm) 0
Carbon Dioxide (ppm) 8
Turbidity (m) .62
Coliform Bacteria yes
Pearl River (River Bend)
T emp ( C ) 24.5
PH 7
DO (ppm) 8
Nitrates (ppm) 0
Phos (ppm) 1
BOD (ppm) 4
Carbon Dioxide (ppm) 8
Turbidity (m) .25
Coliform Bacteria yes
Cypress Swamp
T emp ( C ) 20.1
PH 7
DO (ppm) 4
Nitrates (ppm) 0
Phos (ppm) 1
BOD (ppm) 0
Carbon Dioxide (ppm) 8
Turbidity (m) .35
Coliform Bacteria yes

 

 

Emery High School

Recently, we did some tests in Biology on water that was collected from around Emery County. In our group, we concluded that our water from below Ferron was not of very good quality. I believe that this caused by many factors. Such as the high sediment level coming from all of the irrigation that takes
place up stream from our collection site. The high nitrogen level might be caused by the man-made chemicals put on the land by farmers.

The thing that I learned from these lab tests is that the results really vary from place to place depending on what is upstream of your sample site. Our group interpreted our results by comparing them to a color chart and deciding which color was the closest to the sample color.

The only thing I would do differently in these tests is to test water at the "top" of the water source before it has any human contamination and then test the water below or at the bottom of the water source to see how much people have polluted the water.

 

Bay-Arenac ISD Career Center

Our class was very excited to collaborate in the Global Water Sampling Project. Not only was testing our water quality important and good to know but it also turned out to be fun and educational. Many other schools and teachers collaborated with us along with participation from all of the students from our
classes. Through the many variables we originally thought about, we figured the water was going to be extremely different then that of the pond. Ironically both water bodies (pond and ditch) were actually quite identical. Not only was the pond and ditch nearly identical but also we found out that our water quality was excellent. Almost all of our tests proved to fall within the normal parameters for the testing variables. The plants, insects, animals, and human interaction have all worked symbiotically to complete an ecological niche that is suitable for life. Next time we will start the project a little earlier into the semester so the students can do all of the testing outdoors. Other than this everything that we worked out step-by-step worked flawlessly. We thought that the Global Water Sampling Project is a wonderful project for all of the participants both foreign and domestic. We look forward to other projects that CIESE has to offer. This water quality project was truly a good representation of how to assess the quality of water based on physical characteristics and chemical substances while also looking for relationships and trends among the data collected by all project participants.

 

Powell Middle School

Hi! We are the students from Trogan country. We are here to share with you our results from our Global Water Sampling Project. We have learned a great deal about water quality and pollution from our research.  We used the LaMotte water monitoring kit in testing our water samples. The source of water we used was from Mayes Lake, a camping site, associated with Riverside Park . Mayes Lake is used for many other activities, such as boating and fishing.  It had rained for at least three days when we collected our water sample. We collected our sample after school November 4, 2002. The sample was collected from the fishing peer near the edge of the lake.  The water sample was tested three times for each of the items below, and produced the following results:

Test Factor Results Rank
Turbidity:__ 40TTU 2 (Fair)
Temp Change oC:__10 1 ( poor)
Dissolved Oxygen: _ 8ppm 2 Fair)
Biochemical Oxygen Demand:__ 8ppm 2 (Fair)
pH:____ 8ppm 2 (Fair)
Nitrate:___Not found( color change absent) N/A
Phosphate:___ 2ppm 3 (Good)
Coliform Bacteria:__ Positive 1 ( Poor)

In analyzing the results we found that:
* Turbidity and phosphate levels were good. Both indicated that pollution entering the lake through run-off, decaying plants, and debris were small.
*pH level eight (8) was good for most aquatic organisms.
* Dissolved oxygen and Biochemical Oxygen Demand Were fair. We thought this were acceptable due to the time of the year the tests were conducted and also the condition of the weather. The area around the lake was clean. There were no undesirable odors. We did not observe many plants, such as algae
growing in the water. There were a few decaying plants near the edge. In our research we found that the dissolve oxygen and the biochemical oxygen demand in water can be affected by vegetation growing in the water, bacteria decay of dead plants, and sewage.
* The coliform bacteria count was high. This could be contributed to the Pearl River Which is the main source of water for Mayes Lake. The Pearl River travels through many cities, serving as the main water source. The camp ground is also located near the lake and could produce fecal materials that come
in contact with the lake.

In conclusion our hypothesis was partially correct. When the data was calculated we used the mean and the mode to give ranking to the data. The mode came out as fair and the mean was 2.5 (Fair+). From these results we concluded that Mayes Lake is not a good source for drinking water but is good for
the purpose in which it was designed.  We really had fun staying over after classes working on this project. It was a good learning experience. Some members of the group expressed an interest
in during a similar project for the science fair.

We give special thanks to Ranger Greg Plump for allowing us to use Mayes Lake for our test site, and also for coming over to give us access to the park when it was closed due to the rain. We also thank our science teacher Ms A. Derrick.

 


Harold Wilson Middle School

Harold Wilson is located in the city of Newark, New Jersey.  We sampled the lower Passaic River first.
Another sample was taken from the Passaic River just above the waterfalls at Paterson. The results were:
Turbidity: 0 JTU
Oxygen: 14.2 ppm
Phosphate: 0.2 ppm
Nitrate: 4.0 ppm
Ph: 7.5

The differences were 1. Turbidity and 2. Oxygen  Our hypothesis was the all readings would be higher downstream. The oxygen was higher upstream. During the turbidity test we noticed that the sample
water was clearer than the tap water. We would like to extend our experiment to check tap water samples and to check for the Water Quality Index.

 

Pacific Horizons School

Part I: Research and Hypothesis
A healthy stream contains levels of about 5.5 ppm or 90-100% of dissolved oxygen. The higher the oxygen level the more life a stream can support.  Dissolved Oxygen (DO) levels are highest in the late afternoon and lowest at dawn. The minimum amount of oxygen required to prevent negative effects on
organism is 5 ppm in most places. The main manmade factor that causes DO to change in a negative way involves the buildup of organic wastes. When organic wastes are dumped into a stream DO levels decrease, which increases the oxygen demand. Cold water can absorb more DO than warm water. Our
class made a hypothesis based on several observations that included the following: (1) there was an excessive amount of garbage in and around the stream; (2) there was the presence of at least two piggeries along the stream; (3) there was minimal plant life and few organism in the stream; and (4) the
water in the stream flows slowly. Our hypothesis was that our stream would have little or no oxygen content.

Part II: Test Procedures
Our class tested 8 factors: pH, temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen , phosphates, nitrates, rate of flow, and depth. The salinity, DO, phosphates and nitrates were all tested with kits. (The phosphates and nitrates kit was provided by the E.P.A.) For rate of flow, we measured 10 to 15 feet of the stream
then dropped a ball at the beginning point and timed how long it took it to reach the end point. A math equation was used to determine the rate of flow.  For the depth, a ruler and/or meter stick were used to measure water depth at both the middle of the stream and at the banks of the stream. To see
photos of our class testing the stream, go to <http://www.pacifichorizonsschool.com/highschool/GlobalWaterSamplingProject.htm>.

Part III: Conclusion
As we could see from our data, the stream sections we tested were actually rather healthy, contrary to our hypothesis. We determined that it was probably due to the fact that we tested a running stream that relies heavily on rain, which is plentiful on our island. When it rains, which is often, the stream is usually full and flowing. However, during periods of little rain, the stream becomes smaller and unhealthy. Therefore, because this stream was flowing during our testing, whatever chemicals that would normally disturb or effect the stream, were all washed down the stream. (Unfortunately, these chemicals will end up being washed out to the sea where our coral reefs are located.) We hypothesize that if we were to study the stream at a lower point of the stream, where the water isn't flowing as much, we would probably find lower DO levels, and the subsequent effects that come with lower DO levels.  We also hypothesized that if we were to test for microorganisms and chloroform in the area that we did study, it would probably give us a better picture of the actual health of the stream.