Programs and initiatives

Citizen science projects

On this page:


Latrobe Valley dust research

The Latrobe Valley dust research project aims to better understand air quality in the Latrobe Valley. Community members are invited to help us design a scientific study about dust (particulate matter).

EPA is holding study and design sessions in late June.

Caring for Waterhole Creek

Community members examine a vegetation sample from Waterhole Creek

Caring for Waterhole Creek program was a collaboration between EPA and the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA). This year-long campaign consisted of volunteers monitoring water quality on a fortnightly basis at a number of sites along Waterhole Creek, starting in February 2017.

The aim of the campaign was to gather important water quality information to support current and future management and regulatory practices in the Waterhole Creek catchment.

Find out more about the results from Caring for Waterhole Creek, or read our case study.


Microplastic fragments on the ground.

Microplastics are pieces of plastic smaller than 5 mm in diameter. The main sources of microplastics are:

  • plastic resin pellets (also known as nurdles) used in the production of plastic
  • microbeads found in cosmetics and other personal care products
  • synthetic clothing fibres
  • fragments of larger plastic products that break down into smaller pieces.

Other pollutants can accumulate on microplastics, which makes them toxic when eaten by aquatic animals such as fish – they can mistake microplastics for food.

EPA has been conducting research with community groups and research partners Sustainability Victoria, Melbourne WaterRMIT and the Port Phillip EcoCentre to better understand the microplastics problem here in Victoria.

By combining traditional science with citizen science, we are aiming to:

  • determine the types of microplastics found in freshwater and marine environments
  • identify potential sources of microplastics
  • detect microplastics hotspots in Port Phillip Bay and the surrounding catchment.  

Latrobe Valley air monitoring co-design

The air monitoring co-design panel has developed a blueprint for a more extensive air monitoring network in the Latrobe Valley.

More than 30 community members participated in the co-design process, which developed a single model for the air monitoring network. Community members were supported by EPA's air scientists and local experts during the design process.

Find out more about the Latrobe Valley enhanced air monitoring network.

Page last updated on 13 Jun 2018