The Washington Conservation District (WCD) and volunteers conduct a variety of annual water quality monitoring activities throughout Washington County. These programs are vital to gauge the effectiveness of various water management plans.Through long-term monitoring, local units of government, including watershed organizations, have a tool to determine where to focus objectives, what is possible for a particular water resource, potential problems, and whether goals are being met.


Through monitoring of county lakes, streams, and groundwater, water quality and water levels can be managed appropriately, erosion control can be established to effectively protect water resources, and urban stormwater controls and agricultural best management practices can be checked to ensure they are functioning properly.

Without long-term monitoring, we do not get a full understanding of a water resource; only a snap shot of what we have currently. Long-term monitoring gives us a record of what a water resource was in the past, shows us possibilities for the future and helps us detect factors influencing water quality before they become problems. 

Water quality data is also a factual tool that can be used to educate local officials and landowners regarding how their actions and land use can impact water resources. Volunteers monitoring programs promote watershed stewardship by engaging and involving volunteers in natural resource management. Volunteers from around the county can participate in many of the water monitoring programs. All residents can have access to the data collected through the programs. Click here to view the WCD monitoring site map to see if we have data pertaining to your particular resource.

Monitoring Services Include:

As part of Washington County's baseline water resource monitoring program, the Washington Conservation District has compiled standard operating procedures to supplement the types of monitoring necessary to fulfill the program's goals. To download, right-click the link(s) below and select "save link as...." to your computer's hard drive or network.

Water Monitoring Program Standard Operating Procedures Documents

Lake Water Quality Monitoring.pdf

Water Grab Sampling.pdf

Groundwater Monitoring.pdf

Automated Water Sampling.pdf

Data Management.pdf

Flow Monitoring.pdf

Benthic Macroinvertebrate Protocols.pdf