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The boat captain meets the Riverkeeper Club

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As Capt. John Lipscomb patrolled the Upper Hudson this week, he met with a group of children who have been taking part in a Riverkeeper Club organized by Schuylerville Public Library and Hudson Crossing Park, two of Riverkeeper’s partners on water quality monitoring in the Upper Hudson River.

Schuylerville is about 180 miles north of New York City, and roughly 25 miles north of the Troy Dam, the northermost point where the Atlantic Ocean’s tides influence the estuary. Riverkeeper partnered with Jarrett Engineers, SUNY Cobleskill and our core science partners at CUNY Queens College and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory to pilot a monitoring project in the Upper Hudson in 2016. This year, we built out the project using our community science model, and engaged a wonderful group of individuals, watershed groups and other organizations who care passionately about the river.

Beyond gathering data, we never know what will grow out of starting a new monitoring project. Every sample taken is a vote for clean water. And the power of community science comes not only from the data gathered, but the people who gather it. This club is a case in point. The club, made up of mostly elementary age kids, met six times, gathering macroinvertebrate samples, creating cardboard boats for Hudson Crossing Park’s annual community race, and other projects focused on water, and how to protect it.

The club was itself a pilot, and the organizers hope to build on and expand it next year. Fantastic!

Doug Reed, a wonderful advocate who founded Hudson River Basin Watch and works with the Battenkill Conservancy, helps John process samples from the Upper Hudson. He also took these great photos.

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