To celebrate World Water Day, alongside the many other Conservation Authorities in the Province of Ontario, Cataraqui Conservation is set to release its latest findings on the health and well-being of local watersheds through its 2023 Watershed Report Card.
Compiled every five years, the Report Card does as the name states – offers a ‘check up’ on the health of the Cataraqui Watershed which is made up of 11 smaller watersheds. More specifically, it assesses the quality of both surface and groundwater, as well as the conditions of the forests and wetlands throughout the region. Each Report Card is unique to the region for which it was developed, since each major watershed within the province has its own specific characteristics and challenges.
Ultimately, this document is meant as more than just a static recitation of facts and figures but is instead a call to action for Conservation Authorities, all levels of government, industry, environmental partner agencies and residents to help conserve, restore and protect the natural resources that support us. It outlines areas of need, showing where stakeholders, including all area residents, can step up to help mitigate any concerns now and in the future.
Conservation Authorities, including Cataraqui Conservation undertake watershed-based programs to protect people and property from flooding and other natural hazards and to conserve natural resources for economic, social, and environmental benefits. These Report Cards are a management tool that allow Conservation Authorities and their partners to better target their programs and services, and more effectively measure environmental change. Technological advances, additional resources, as well as continued regular monitoring and reporting help build knowledge and understanding of local conditions within the watersheds that encompass the Cataraqui Region and how they are changing.
As with other Conservation Authorities, Cataraqui Conservation utilizes a variety of programs and data collection methods to produce the watershed report card. These include:
- The Provincial Water Quality Monitoring Network (PWQMN)
- The Provincial Groundwater Monitoring Network (PGMN)
- The Ontario Benthos Biomonitoring Network (OBBN)
- Targeted watershed outlet quality sampling
- GIS (Geographic Information System) Mapping Data and related tools
To view Cataraqui Conservation’s 2023 Watershed Report Card visit https://cataraquiconservation.ca/pages/watershed. To see a list of all 35 Conservation Authority Report Cards visit https://watershedcheckup.ca/.