Hydrology Citizen Science App

Coastal Observer

University of Delaware
App Mockup

Coastal areas are in constant evolution, but in times of the imminent climate crisis, the coastline will change dramatically, and extreme weather phenomena are already starting to be part of our daily life. The Coastal Observer Citizen Science project explores these effects and their impact on the environment and our mood. By contributing observations about floods, tides storms and water quality, Citizen Scientists can help the University of Delaware, US, with their research.

Climate change will impact where and how humans live. As tides rise and storms intensify, humans will be forced to adapt to the changing environment and increase resiliency by learning more about the local impacts of rising tides and intensified storms. The Coastal Observer App encourages citizens to become active in monitoring weather and water locally and will help researchers build a pathway for a sustainable future.

The Citizen Scientists may choose from 4 activities in the Coastal Observer App:

1) basic environmental observations by sharing how the current setting makes them feel.
2) weather observations to document the current weather and its impacts.
3) water level to document where the water levels are and how this might impact infrastructure, life, or property.
4) water quality to document how our environment is impacted by human practices.

Observing Weather Events

Weather events can have devastating effects on local communities. Using this application, the observer can make note of stormy conditions and their associated effects. This information will be documented through photographs and user documentation.

Measuring Water Level

If there is an installed and fixed water level gauge on the location, participants can use that gauge to enter the water level. If there are no installed, fixed gauges, users can report a value from a nearby automated gauge at the time of their observation, or simply take a picture to document the water level visually. 

Monitoring Water Quality

Users may use a Secchi Disk to make manual observations of water clarity.

Coastal Observer for Schools

Schools can easily include the Coastal Observer App in their curriculum. Educators can utilize the app to teach reading water levels or using a Secchi Disk to increase environmental awareness in students, while also providing the opportunity to express feelings about water and weather events.

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Live Citizen Science Map Application from Coastal Observer

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