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Convergence at the Confluence Recap, News Articles, and Photos

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Events, News

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – (Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014) – The 3 Rivers QUEST (3RQ), a program of the West Virginia Water Research Institute at West Virginia University, hosted the Convergence at the Confluence Conference in downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on Monday, Aug. 11.  The conference, funded by the Colcom Foundation, brought together those involved with the regional water quality monitoring program and gave the public an opportunity to learn more about water quality in the Upper Ohio River Basin.

The conference featured talks from the program’s research partners, including Melissa O’Neal of the West Virginia Water Research Institute, Dr. Brady Porter and Dr. Beth Dakin of the Center for Environmental Research and Education at Duquesne University, and Dr. Benjamin Stout of Wheeling Jesuit University.  The various research partners provided overviews of water quality data in their respective areas of focus, including the Monongahela River, Allegheny River, and the Ohio River. 

In addition to the presentations focused on the researcher’s data, the event also provided a great opportunity for the various watershed groups involved 3RQ to network and discuss, in an open format, their monitoring efforts. 

“Biweekly chemical monitoring in the Monongahela River Basin was initiated in 2009 and by early 2013 the 3RQ research partners had begun monitoring throughout the Upper Ohio River Basin,” explained O’Neal.  “We’ve also had numerous watershed groups involved, so a lot of data has been collected.  Bringing everyone together at this event allows us to discuss what we’ve been seeing and to build upon the collaborative monitoring model we’ve established amongst scientists and citizens.”

Presentations from the conference are currently available on the 3 Rivers QUEST Web site and can be viewed at,

For more information about 3 Rivers QUEST and to see water quality information from throughout the Upper Ohio River Basin, visit the program’s Web site,

About the West Virginia Water Research Institute

The West Virginia Water Research Institute has been in existence since 1967 and serves as a statewide vehicle for performing research related to water issues. It is the premier water research center in West Virginia and, within selected fields, an international leader.

About the Colcom Foundation
The primary mission of the Colcom Foundation is to foster a sustainable environment to ensure quality of life for all Americans by addressing major causes and consequences of overpopulation and its adverse effects on natural resources. Regionally, the Foundation supports conservation, environmental projects and cultural assets.

3RQ Convergence at the Confluence Conference – In the News

Scientists: Water in Upper Ohio Basin Remains Safe reported that drinking water in the Upper Ohio River basin is safe to drink, but it remains vital that the monitoring of runoff into the region’s rivers and creeks be continued. That’s the conclusion of water quality experts from Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia who spoke Monday at the Convergence at the Confluence, a daylong conference hosted by the Three Rivers QUEST water-quality monitoring program. The event, funded by Colcom Foundation of Pittsburgh, was held at Duquesne University

Official: Dunkard Creek Cooperation Working–Dunkard-Creek-cooperat reported that Bi-weekly monitoring of Dunkard Creek by experts and volunteers, combined with industry cooperation, has helped ward off another Dunkard Creek fish kill, water quality advocates from around the region learned Monday, Aug. 11. At Monday’s conference, held at Duquesne University, just a few city blocks from the confluence of the three rivers, members reviewed what they’ve accomplished and looked at what’s ahead.

Experts: Ohio River Basin Drinking Water Safe, but Needs More Monitoring reported that drinking water in the Upper Ohio River Basin is safe, but it is still vital that the monitoring of run-off into the region’s rivers and creeks be continued. The Environmental Protection Agency has a limit of 500 mg of TDS per liter of water, said Beth Dakin of Duquesne University’s Center for Environmental Research and Education, who spoke at the event.

What is the Quality of Pennsylvania’s Water? It’s Getting Better reported that before the implementation of the Clean Water Act, Pittsburgh’s rivers were so polluted, they barely even had fish, according to Brady Porter, Duquesne University associate professor of biology. Stan Kabala, associate director of CERE, also was interviewed.


Photos from the 3RQ Convergence at the Confluence Conference

*Photo Credit – Lisa Mikolajek Barton, Duquesne University*

WV Watershed Network Meeting Presentation – John King, WV DEP

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Events

John King, Environmental Resources Analyst with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, recently presented at a West Virginia Watershed Network meeting about how to research, document, and report environmental issues in the state of West Virginia.

Below is the link to the presentation, which should prove to be a valuable resource to those involved in the 3 Rivers QUEST program!

How to Document Report Environmental Issues

Second Annual Banquet for Washington County Watershed Alliance

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Events

The Washington County Watershed Alliance will be hosting their 2nd Annual Meeting and Banquet on Wednesday, March 19.  The event will be held at Julian’s in Washington, PA.

The meeting, with a banquet dinner, is held to provide members of the Alliance and Watershed Associations the opportunity to socialize and network.  Members will also get to enjoy presentation and displays from regional groups who can assist their Watershed Associations with work in the upcoming year.

For more information about the event, please contact:

Jennifer Dann
Washington County Conservation District Watershed Specialist
(724) 503-4785
2014 Annual Meeting Registration Form

3RQ Presentation from the Facing the Challenges Conference NOW Available

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in News

In November of this past year, Duquesne University hosted the Facing the Challenges Conference.  The two-day symposium explored the challenges of unconventional shale gas extraction and featured a number of researchers from throughout the region.

Dr. Paul Ziemkiewicz presented on behalf of the 3RQ research partners the findings on the effects of shale gas development in the three rivers region.

Facing the Challenges - Paul Video