Agenda subject to change.
Field trip availability pending adequate signups.
USEPA Office of Research and Development Aquatic Research Facility & USEPA Experimental Stream Facility Mesocosm/East Fork Watershed Cooperative Tour
8:30 am – 12:00 pm | $20
For the first part of this tour, the USEPA’s Office of Research Development invites you to tour their Aquatic Research Facility (ARF) which is the current version of the Newtown Aquatic Toxicology Laboratory, the birth place of aquatic toxicology and biomonitoring. The Cincinnati animal research program uses terrestrial and aquatic organisms to address research topics such as measuring environmental exposures and risks and evaluating risk reduction techniques. The animal research program is accredited by the Association for Accreditation and Assessment for Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC) and is the sole AAALAC-accredited aquatic facility within EPA. This program supports ORD’s Safe and Sustainable Water Resources, Sustainable and Healthy Communities, and Chemical Safety for Sustainability Research Programs. It also supports collaborative efforts with EPA’s Regions and some Office of Water Clean Water Act programs (e.g., Sections 308 and 402 NPDES, compliance toxicity testing, TMDL projects, and effluent guidelines). Approximately one half of the facility, ARF, is dedicated to aquatic vertebrate and invertebrate culture and testing. One of the testing rooms has the capability of running flow-through exposures and automated renewal sediment tests. Few US labs have these capabilities. All rooms share a water treatment system which supplies both culture water on a constant flow-through basis (i.e., 24 hours a day) and test water that has been chemically characterized. The final two hours of this tour showcases the EPA’s Experimental Stream Facility (ESF) and East Fork Watershed Study (EFWS), which have turned into recognized tools for conducting eco-toxicological and watershed management R&D, respectively. An over-arching theme for research using the ESF/EFWS is to use monitoring, modeling, and new economic tools to cost-effectively reduce the impacts of excess nutrients in receiving waters. Inside the ESF is a one-of-a-kind stream mesocosm set-up for conducting dose-response studies on stream biotic communities to help develop, test, and validate criteria for aquatic life. The EFWS facilitates watershed-scale, system-level analysis. It is a collaborative effort among government and academic scientists; local, state and regional water resource assessment and management professionals; USDA conservationists, and drinking water treatment and waste water management operators and experts. The goal for the EFWS is to provide monitoring and modeling infrastructure for research developing better approaches to watershed management.
8:30 am – 12:00 pm | $20
Greater Cincinnati Water Works serves about 1.1 million people in the Cincinnati, Ohio Area. About 900,000 of the area’s residents are served by the Richard Miller Treatment Plant (RMTP) which draws water from the Ohio River. This 2.5-hour tour will show you the overall treatment process at the RMTP including Granular Activated Carbon and our new state-of-the-art ultraviolet disinfection facility. This cutting-edge drinking water treatment facility relies on much of the original early 1900s infrastructure combined with expanded and modern treatment technologies. GCWW relies heavily on multiple types of analytical and monitoring equipment to evaluate source water, various stages in the treatment process and water quality in the distribution system. You will see how online monitors and analytical equipment are used to ensure the drinking water is safe from the source to the tap. The tour will finish with a historical tour of the “Old River Station,” the original 1907 pumping station complete with the original steam engines which moved water from the river up to the treatment plant.
1:00 pm – 4:00 pm | $20
This field trip will consist of an in-depth two-hour tour of the Thomas More College Biology Field Station facilities, with emphases on the mussel propagation aquaculture laboratory, managed in conjunction with the USFW and KYFW and the harmful algal bloom detection system. Pending weather and interest level, boat electrofishing on the mainstem of the Ohio River will also be offered. The Field Station is a 25-acre teaching and research facility situated along the banks of the Ohio River (RM451) in Campbell County, Kentucky, just upstream from Cincinnati, Ohio. It was the previous site of the US Government Lock and Dam 35, built in 1919, and one of 51 wicket dams along the Ohio River. The Field Station includes classrooms, research and teachings labs, a conference center & lodge, four houses, an interpretive nature trail and a fleet of research boats. The main activities involve undergraduate research in the field of aquatic biology and K-12 STEM outreach programs.