Trout Unlimited (TU) Marcellus Shale Field Organizer David Sewak will hold a Coldwater Training session at the Glinodo Center, 6270 East Lake Road Erie, Pa. on Saturday, Nov. 12 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

Sewak will train participants and Pennsylvania volunteers how to monitor water quality in rivers and streams where gas drilling is occurring. As part of its Coldwater Conservations Corps (CCC), Sewak will train individuals to serve as stream stewards. Taking water samples, measuring stream flow and conducting visual assessments are just some of the responsibilities of a stream steward.

“The training session will be an opportunity for Erie County residents to test and monitor the water quality of their streams as well as assess the impact of natural gas drilling,” said Sewak.

“We want to ensure that sportsmen and women play an integral role in preventing the destruction of important headwater habitats—the places where we fish and hunt,” said Dave Rothrock, immediate past president of TU’s Pennsylvania Council. “We must make sure that these rivers and streams remain healthy for future generations.”   

The local TU chapter will be sponsoring Sewak’s visit along with Our Water Our Rights, a community group whose aim it to educate and empower local citizens to preserve and protect vital water resources.

Dr. Thomas Mack of North East, a representative of the local Caldwell Creek chapter of TU, is looking forward to the training session.

“The issue of water quality is more important now than ever before because of the recent boom in natural gas drilling in the area,” said Mack, himself a volunteer stream steward. “It could not only affect our watersheds but also our drinking water and health,” said Mack.

With an emphasis on deploying best practices, Trout Unlimited and its Coldwater Conservation Corps is seeing much success in other areas of Pennsylvania, including the Allegheny National Forest, where monitors placed in the water send data every four hours to a satellite, reducing human error.

Registration for TU members is free and $17.50 for non-members. Coffee, snacks and lunch will be provided. To preregister, email David Sewak at dsewak@tu.org.

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