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Testing the Waters in Puerto Rico with Citizen Science

Ten months after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, the Surfrider Foundation Rincón Chapter’s Blue Water Task Force is even more committed to providing critical water testing services for local communities.

Hurricane Maria knocked out the infrastructure on the entire island, including the electricity and water supply. In Rincón, the community was accessing water from an untested spring that ran through the town. Unable to use their own laboratory due to lack of electricity, the Blue Water Task Force was fortunate to be able to set up their testing equipment, including the IDEXX Sealer and the IDEXX Colilert and Enterolert tests, at a local health center with a generator to test the water quality for the community. IDEXX has been supporting the Surfrider Foundation in Puerto Rico and other locations with supplies, training and public awareness for several years.

“One thing that really flows to the top after this whole ordeal with the hurricane is the value of a citizen science program or a community-based science program,” said Steve Tamar, Vice Chair of the Surfrider Foundation Rincón Chapter. “We are very grateful for the support that allows us to keep the Blue Water Task force efforts going in Puerto Rico.”

The video below, produced by the Blue Water Task Force, shows how volunteers used citizen science to protect the public health of the community’s most basic need: clean water. Keep a close eye out for cameos from the IDEXX Quanti-Tray Sealer and Colilert and Enterolert tests! 

The Surfrider Foundation is dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network. With 80 chapters and 70 youth clubs in North America, Surfrider helps to protect 5,656 miles of coastline with a grassroots approach to citizen science and environmental advocacy. 

To learn more about the Surfrider Foundation and their mission to protect our oceans or to find a chapter near you, please visit www.surfrider.org



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