Development of a Community Science Stormwater Pond Water Quality Testing Program
McQuain, Elizabeth Ann
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Stormwater ponds are a common Best Management Practice (BMP) deployed in the newer developments of coastal South Carolina in both residential and commercial areas. They are designed to control stormwater volume and to alleviate downstream water quality issues and can also pose a threat to environmental and human health if poorly managed. A community-based stormwater pond water quality monitoring program presents a way to engage residents in the monitoring of their stormwater ponds while producing valuable data for both communities and stormwater professionals. In South Carolina there are community science programs that monitor water quality in public waterways (<i>e.g.</i>, tidal creeks, freshwater streams), but none that address or include residential stormwater ponds. To meet this need, a community science program was developed: the South Carolina Adopt-a-Pond program, which provides basic training, background materials, sampling protocols, and interpretation of results. Surveys were developed to inform and adapt the program to each community based on their needs. To optimize resources, support, and success for the SC Adopt-a-Pond program, the framework of a Community of Practice is recommended.