EWEB also engages in shorter-term special monitoring projects through grants or if the opportunity arises to partner with others on a particular project. Some examples of special monitoring activities include:
- Passive sampling: this type of monitoring uses a relatively new technology where water flows through a membrane enclosed in a metal container and submerged in the river. Contaminants adhere to the membranes and accumulate over a specified period of time. Click here to view a USGS report on passive sampling efforts in the McKenzie.
- Dissolved organic carbon (DOC): DOC (from leaves, soil, algae, etc.) can react with water treatment disinfectants to form disinfection byproducts, which are regulated by the Safe Drinking Water Act and can pose a risk to human health. EWEB and the USGS have conducted studies to characterize where DOC, is coming from in the watershed and at what time of year and river flow. Click here to view study results.
- Microbial source tracking (MST): MST is used to identify sources of fecal pollution in surface waters. EWEB and the City of Springfield have partnered in a study to look at potential causes of elevated E. coli levels observed in several City stormwater channels that discharge to the McKenzie River above EWEB’s drinking water intake. Samples were taken during significant storm events. Results included areas traces of ruminant, human and dog sources, with dog contributions being the highest, so targeting pet waste might be helpful.