Father and son, Grant and James Muir, had watched their awa (Te Pahaoa river) slowly die because of farm pollution. They decided to act and identified the need for clear and consistent data on water quality as the starting point.
They developed a technology platform called RiverWatch. It makes real-time data collection affordable and accessible for community groups and interprets that data into meaningful water quality information. The system uses the latest in remote sensing technology, housed in a modular floating device (waka) made from recycled milk bottles. The waka connects to networks and runs data interpretation with artificial intelligence programmes.
RiverWatch provides predictions and insights on a river’s respiration, ecological thresholds, mahinga kai values and overall health trends. Currently there are 13 waka in action. RiverWatch data helps other organisations and communities to determine the best way to restore and repair water quality.