About the Avon River Environment Association (AREA)
The Avon River Environment Association (AREA) is a volunteer citizens group whose mandate is to reduce pollution and improve water quality in Lake Victoria (Avon River) by planting aquatic vegetation.
The Stratford flood of July 2000 revealed that raw sewage was being discharged from the sanitary sewer located along the North shore, and prompted the inaugural meeting of the association on the 17th of January, 2001. Very high e-coli concentrations were measured near the sewer and elsewhere in the lake. With the construction of a new sanitary system, this sewer was decommissioned in 2006.
In order to improve the overall poor water quality of Lake Victoria, the construction of a marsh east of the Festival Bridge was proposed by AREA. A project plan was prepared in 2005 by UTRCA. The Rotary Club of Stratford and UTRCA provided their considerable expertise in fund raising to reach the required goal of $100,000.
The donors, as shown on the display board, were as follows:
In 2007 the establishment of a marsh east of the Festival Bridge was commenced.
AREA will continue to attempt to clean the water in Lake Victoria by means of the following activities:
- By planting more bulrushes in the east end of the marsh.
- By planting bulrushes on the north shore between the Trestle Bridge and the Festival Bridge.
- By advocating bioengineering techniques to control erosion on the shores of Lake Victoria.
- By continuing to take water samples to monitor water quality.
- By working in conjunction with UTRCA, Rotary,and the City to achieve these aims.