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Waccamaw Watershed Academy


Volunteer Water Monitoring Program

Since 2006, the Waccamaw Watershed Academy‚Äôs Volunteer Water Quality Monitoring Program has been keeping an eye on the health of surface water in Horry and Georgetown counties. Now, the Volunteer Water Quality Monitoring Program has grown to include four monitoring programs: Waccamaw River, Surfside Beach, Murrells Inlet, and Briarcliffe Acres. Additionally, students at Coastal Carolina University can join the Campus Monitoring program and help monitor CCU's stormwater ponds that eventually flow to the Waccamaw River. 

Volunteer monitoring is conducted twice a month year-round by local, trained volunteers using environmental testing equipment to sample selected sites within the watershed of interest. Each program was designed to meet the specific water quality goals of each municipality.

Volunteers work as part of a team, with much of the coordination of the team's activity being done by the team itself under the leadership of the team captain. Assistance is provided by the project's field leader and by Coastal Carolina University's volunteer monitoring coordinators who, in addition, ensure that all quality assurance and quality control procedures are being followed in accordance with the guidelines provided by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA).

Program Objectives

The Volunteer Water Monitoring Program fulfills four needs:

  1. Helps local municipalities satisfy NDPES Phase II stormwater program requirements for public involvement and education.
  2. Assists local municipalities with illicit discharge detection.
  3. Increases geographic and temporal coverage of water quality monitoring across the Horry Georgetown county regions. This will assist with development of site specific water quality standards.
  4. Engages in sufficient QA/QC efforts for data to be considered by SC DHEC for inclusion in their biennial 305(b) reports.

Funding Partners


Interested in Volunteering?

Two volunteers conducting water quality monitoringFor more information on how to volunteer, contact your local program Field Leader or Volunteer Water Quality Monitoring Coordinators. Contact us