DataStream’s first Northern Data-thon!

In May the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) hosted over 40 water stewards from across the territory for a community-based water monitoring workshop. The workshop included training in monitoring protocols, results-sharing and discussion. It also provided an opportunity for some hands-on time with DataStream for water monitors to dive into all the data they’ve been collecting.

The NWT-wide Community Based Monitoring Program

The Northwest Territories (NWT)-Wide Community-Based Water Quality Monitoring Program supports training of local monitors while collecting information that can contribute to answering community questions and concerns about water quality. Now in its 8th field season, the program has grown to include 21 communities that collect data from over 40 sites across the territory.

The program is coordinated by GNWT Environment and Natural Resources in collaboration with community partners. Ultimately, the aim is to provide local monitors with the skills and knowledge so that communities can coordinate and undertake local water monitoring on an independent basis – a core goal of the NWT Water Stewardship Strategy and a direction reaffirmed by Indigenous leadership at regional meetings.

Digging into data with Mackenzie DataStream

Mackenzie DataStream was built through a unique collaboration between The Gordon Foundation and the Government of the Northwest Territories. This open-access platform has come a long way since it first launched in 2016 and the workshop was a great opportunity to showcase some of its new features and updates.

Following a short demonstration, participants were able to dig into the data that they and others have collected throughout the region during an interactive Data-thon session. Attendees worked through a series of guided questions to gain experience navigating the system while exploring water quality results.

Positive feedback

We are always working on ways to make DataStream more user-friendly and accessible and the workshop was a great opportunity for us to receive feedback on how we are doing as well as areas for improvement.

Overall, people were happy with the system and were really pleased to see additional data sources now online, including long-term water quality monitoring from Environment and Climate Change Canada.

While we always have a long list of updates on the go to grow and improve DataStream, it’s great to know that the system is already living up to expectations and making a difference in how people can share and access data!

If your organization is interested in hosting a DataStream Data-thon please contact us!