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Bacteria Testing Begins on San Bernard
Posted on Apr 12th, 2017

GBF volunteers currently monitor 48 Monitoring Sites along Galveston Bay under the TST program.  This program is administered statewide by Texas State University and in our area by H-GAC.  This is the same program in which our FOR volunteers participate as Citizen Scientists to monitor water quality parameters at designated sites on a monthly frequency. Galveston Bay Foundation has the additional capability to test for Enterococci bacteria at 20 of their Monitoring Sites. GBF evaluates test results and provides area stakeholders with ambient bacteria levels along with other water quality parameters.
The GBF staff and dedicated volunteers have set up a bacteria-testing lab and developed an analytical process to obtain quality results.  This partnership will allow FOR to leverage GBF established expertise.  Benefits gained through this partnership will be:
  • Training to obtain proper samples with proper materials
  • Established procedural and Quality Assurance protocols
  • Recognized test method following EPA protocol: Enterolert
  • Reputation of GBF among stakeholders to deliver accurate results
  • Results database:  H-GAC WRIM “Water Recourses Information Map “
H-GAC, who administers our TST program, has been direct and clear with FOR regarding the restricted use of data obtained through volunteers. Our test results do not meet the stringent requirements of Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) and therefore will not be part of the data set from the designated TCEQ monitoring sites, and thus are not to be used for TCEQ action. There are currently two TCEQ designated sites in the San Bernard Tidal and are sampled quarterly. 
FOR would like to extend our sincere gratitude to Sarah Gossett, Galveston Bay Foundation Water Quality Volunteer Coordinator, for providing our Environmental Committee with the opportunity to enter into this association with GBF.
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