Jan
28th

EPA Support Research to Protect America’s Urban Watersheds with Green Infrastructure

EPA Announces Nearly $5 Million in Grants to Support Research to Protect America’s Urban Watersheds with Green Infrastructure

……………. “This partnership provides a unique opportunity to evaluate the early benefits, long-term performance, and economic success of green infrastructure practices in urban communities.” said U.S. EPA Deputy Administrator Bob Perciasepe. “Through this research, we will gain valuable knowledge that can be applied across the United States to create a safer and more sustainable water supply.”

Philadelphia is a national leader among cities around the country in using green infrastructure to address problems from combined sewer overflows (CSOs). Systems that combine sewage and stormwater pipes normally feed into water treatment facilities where polluted wastewater is treated. During heavy rainstorms, the large amount of water running off pavement and roofs in cities can cause these systems to overflow. When a system overflows, the untreated wastewater flows directly into waterways.

“EPA’s support has been key as we implement Philadelphia’s Green City, Clean Waters plan,” noted Mayor Michael A. Nutter. “This forward thinking plan will not only result in better water quality for the City, but it will also provide a multitude of benefits for Philadelphians like cleaner air, revitalized green spaces, and even new economic opportunity. EPA’s commitment to making Green City, Clean Waters a model for the nation is confirmed by the creation of this grant program.”

Folks, this is really embarrassing for New York City, New York State and the state of New Jersey!

Read the full press release here.

or download the file here 01_21_2014_ EPA Announces Nearly $5 Million in Grants to Support Research to Protect America’s Urban Watersheds with Green Infrastructure

http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/596e17d7cac720848525781f0043629e/781f854eddc34cf185257c67005c5efb!OpenDocument

Dec
23rd

FOIA: Croton Reports for September and October 2013

The following documents are the result of a FOIA request:

SEPTEMBER 2013:
Croton_Issues_and_Tasks_Report_108_9-2013_(Final)[1]

OCTOBER 2013:
Croton_Issues_and_Tasks_Report_109_10-2013_(Final)[1]

Dec
23rd

Jerome Park Reservoir Work and Access, 2013

This file will download onto your computer and open.

JPR-Work-And-Access-2013

This is a recording of the meeting discussion in December 2013. Conversation is between Facilities Monitoring Committee Chair Robert Fanuzzi, with answers from Bernard Daly and Martha Holstein at times.

Filed under Uncategorized

Dec
23rd

A note to Santa from Jerome Park December 2013

Dear Santa,

For more than 40 years, I have been involved in the Reservoir and Pigeon Park. It started with trying to find the right agency to clean up around the reservoir. Then it was creating a running path so people would not have to run on the dirt. I also had to fight to get the inner fence put in after a bunch of youth went swimming and fell in. After that I found out that the government wanted to build a plant in the reservoir, and so I had my people organize. In the end, I never did get it cleaned, and they are just getting the jogging path built half way around. Please listen to my saga and help.

If justice delayed is justice denied, then it follows that a promised capital projects delayed for more than a few years is just another way to say no. This is about the construction administration which failed to care about people as they chose goal oriented productivity, as well as those who quietly acquiesced to go along for the ride.

All in all, this policy of neglect left a complete breakdown of community building, activity and participation. As evidenced by unemployment figures of more than 12% — the highest in the state, this policy did little to spur the promised boost to the local economy. Spending close to $4 billion on the Croton Water Treatment Plant in the northwest Bronx, and other projects such as the new Gateway shopping mall, and the redevelopment of Yankee Stadium, has made little or no impact on the local or borough economy.

In 2004, in return for building a filter plant in Van Cortland Park, the City Council signed an agreement to spend $200 million to create parks — the largest capital budget expenditure for Bronx parks, which should have been completed within five years. The government immediately closed off the Mosholu Golf Course at the end of 2004, and contractors were ready to go without haste. The parks projects were slower to start capital construction; they had the funding, but curiously not the personnel to assure timely management and completion.

Jerome Park Reservoir was the original site of the filter plant in 1970. When the people found out what the government had been planning, they rose up and fought for their beloved reservoir. In 1993 they asked for permission to walk on the inside roadway near the water, which was granted. The people did this upstate and in Central Park. Since that time, the community has asked for permission to walk inside the level roadway alongside the water. Every year the agency in charge put it off.

After 1999, when it became clear that they could not build the plant in Jerome Park Reservoir, the agency went after the Golf Course, but would not give up the reservoir. They also held up the National Register of Historic Places nomination. In 2006, they told the community they had important work to do around the reservoir but it would not take long – they were going to consolidate the work and put it across the street from Bronx HS Science. In August 2013, this work was exclaimed to be completed in a press release — but alas the sound wall is still up, construction is still ongoing, and the trailers are still on parkland.

The December 2013 Croton monitoring committee explained that access to inside the fence would not be allowed until 2021 after they — complete the filter plant around 2015, complete reservoir capital projects around 2016, and then use it to prepare for the closing of and switch to a new valve for the Delaware Aqueduct. The area that they are using for construction is on parkland that they have been in control of since 1985.

Mosholu Golf Course has been off limits since December 2004. The federal agreement to build the Croton plant was signed in 2005 and it stated that if the plant were not completed by October 2011 the agency would be fined. These delays have cost the public money, removed 43 acres from public use for almost ten years, including the Mosholu Golf clubhouse, putting range and part of the course, itself.

New Parks for the 21st Century was the promise made to the City Council and the media, that $200 million would be spent on Bronx Parks. The latest report from the Comptroller shows only $146 of $186 million mitigation completed after 10 years. So what was $40 million per year is now $15 to $20 million per year, which is not a big mitigation deal.

Jerome Park Reservoir Jogging Path is one of the delayed parks projects. This work is progressing outside of the fence on Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) land. There is also not enough money to put the jogging path around the whole 2 miles of the reservoir (including the Old Croton Aqueduct Trail part).

150 or so trees were removed but never replaced. Delays incurred at JPR Jogging path were for many reasons including the need to have trees removed due to encroachment of the berm of the reservoir – a task that could have been taken care of by the agency over the forty years the community has asked for maintenance. Trees were cut down, but the agency will not agree with how many new trees to replace, despite the City Council Law (which they say they are above). What about the million trees is not good enough for the Bronx?

The Old Croton Aqueduct Trail Pedestrian Bridge was part of the original ULURP approved in 1999, along with $43 million in mitigation of Van Cortlandt Park and Mosholu Golf Course. The DEP stalled on doing the study and then when it was done, stated that they do not have enough money to do it. Strange that the government could find funds to fix the Highbridge (which is part of the Old Croton Aqueduct system), but not the pedestrian bridge. Moreover, the full length of the trail in Westchester is a continuous path, but as you can see from the Jogging Path project, not in the Bronx!

Santa, it would be great if you would remove some of these hindrances. Please return the water to the reservoir as I am getting all dried up.

Signed,

Jerome Park

Sep
28th

NYTimes: Arsenic Contamination Threatens Water in Hanoi, September 23, 2013

The New York Times
September 23, 2013
Arsenic Contamination Threatens Water in Hanoi
By DONALD G. McNEIL Jr.

Arsenic-laden sediment that washed down from the Himalayas eons ago underlies vast stretches of Asia, from Pakistan to China. When it gets into underground aquifers, as has happened in Bangladesh, it can contaminate public water supplies and cause illness and death.

Now researchers say arsenic is leaching into a major drinking-water aquifer that serves Hanoi, Vietnam. The culprit, they say, is pumping from private wells, which is draining that aquifer and drawing water from others that contain arsenic.

But the poison is moving more slowly than scientists had feared, and the city still has years or even decades to take protective measures.

The study, by Vietnamese scientists in collaboration with researchers from Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and elsewhere, was “the first to show that a previously clean aquifer has been contaminated,” said the lead author, Alexander van Geen, a geochemist at Columbia. It was published by the journal Nature.

Whether arsenic leaches into underground water depends on the balance of iron and decaying plant material in the aquifer. The chemical process is only partly understood, but iron seems to bind to the arsenic, while carbon in the decaying plants slowly dissolves the iron, and the released arsenic flows into the plume.

Those elements flow through the sediments much more slowly than water does. The team’s 31 research wells in areas of Hanoi near the Red River showed that aggressive pumping of a safe aquifer over the last 20 years had pulled water more than a mile in from a contaminated one. But over the same period, the plume of arsenic contamination — indicated by a streak of gray sand through the safer rust-colored sediments — had moved less than 400 feet.

Arsenic in some areas is 10 to 50 times higher than levels considered safe, Vietnamese officials said. The city plans to install a filter plant, but many Hanoi residents rely on the private wells that are making matters worse.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/24/health/arsenic-contamination-threatens-water-in-hanoi.html?emc=edit_tnt_20130928&tntemail0=y&_r=0

Aug
31st

A Quest for Even Safer Drinking Water, NYT Aug 26, 2013

A Quest for Even Safer Drinking Water

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/27/science/a-quest-for-even-safer-drinking-water.html?emc=edit_tnt_20130831&tntemail0=y&_r=0

The New York Times
August 26, 2013
A Quest for Even Safer Drinking Water
By PETER ANDREY SMITH
UNIONTOWN, Pa. — On a muggy Friday afternoon in a strip mall parking lot, as thunder echoed in the Alleghenies and cottonwood seeds floated on the breeze, Lee Stanish, 32, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Colorado Boulder, and Natalie Hull, 24, a lab manager, stepped out of a white van, its hood plastered with dead insects.

After a brief conversation with a chain store manager, the two women retrieved a large black container from their van and wheeled it into the bathroom. Ms. Hull opened the faucet and let the cold water run. The two snapped on disposable gloves, unpacked their equipment, and began collecting tap water.

Ms. Hull checked the water temperature and filled water in a vial of formaldehyde for cell counts. Dr. Stanish placed another vial of water in a portable chlorine meter for analysis. “We’re in and out in about 10 minutes,” she said. Ms. Hull flipped the faucet off. On to the next tap.

By nightfall, the van would be loaded with close to 30 gallons of water sampled from dozens of locations across the Ohio River Valley. Dr. Stanish and Ms. Hull planned to set up a mobile laboratory in a hotel room in Morgantown, W.Va., all in an effort to understand a hidden underground ecology where organisms eke out a living in dark, cool pipes loaded with chlorine.

“What we know so far is that it’s usually very clean,” Dr. Stanish said. “But it’s a disturbed environment.”

The 53,000 water utilities in the United States deliver some of the safest drinking water in the world — a public health victory of unrivaled success that began in 1908 with chlorination campaigns in Jersey City and Chicago. Still, millions of individual cases of waterborne diseases occur annually and related hospitalization costs approach $1 billion each year. In 2007 and 2008, the most recent years for which figures are available, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recorded 164 waterborne disease outbreaks, almost entirely from protozoan cysts of the parasite Cryptosporidium.

New rules from the Environmental Protection Agency, instituted after earlier outbreaks, have led New York City and other municipalities with unfiltered surface reservoirs to begin zapping tap water with ultraviolet light to inactivate organisms like Cryptosporidium that resist chlorine-based treatments.

The water supply system remains a deteriorating, mostly subterranean infrastructure so complex that in many municipalities officials can’t even say where all the pipes are laid. The need for upgrades has never been greater, a report issued this year by the American Academy of Microbiology said, but they first want to understand what’s living down there.

“We have done the right thing with water treatment,” said Joseph O. Falkinham III, a microbiologist at Virginia Tech. “What we have now is an unexpected consequence of doing the right thing.”

That’s why scientists like Dr. Stanish and Ms. Hull drove hundreds of miles this summer to collect tap water in 20 municipalities. Their eight-day road trip, which started in Ohio, traced a clockwise arc down through Fairmont, W.Va., and Hazard, Ky., before ending up back in Cincinnati. The field work, led by Norman Pace, a biologist at the University of Colorado Boulder, and financed by the Sloan Foundation, is beginning to map the ecological niches favored by certain aquatic organisms, which could lead to better screening methods and better water treatment.

Chlorine-based disinfectants destroy harmful cellular organisms that cause illness — eliminating infectious diseases like typhoid, cholera and dysentery — but to call the process purification is a misnomer. The researchers estimate that between 10 and 100 million free-floating, or planktonic, organisms survive in every quart of tap water.

Despite new genetic techniques, the federally mandated method for identifying what’s in drinking water focus on coliform bacteria, which can be indicators of fecal contamination. Water managers crank up the chlorine when the bacteria are found, although the vast majority of coliform bacteria do not sicken people.

Other microorganisms in drinking water — methylobacteria, sphingomonads, mycobacteria — survive chlorine-based treatment. And many scientists fear that the use of chlorine can result in the growth of resistant and sometimes harmful microorganisms, including Legionella, the cause of Legionnaires’ disease and Pontiac fever, and the nontuberculous mycobacteria, which can infect the lungs, skin and other organs.

Mycobacteria are common inhabitants in drinking water systems, and researchers are particularly interested in the estimated 20,000 infections they cause annually. When ingested or inhaled, mycobacteria can infect the lungs of the elderly or immunocompromised individuals. The infections are sometimes an occupational hazard at indoor pools, called “lifeguard lung.”

The bacteria can be spread with humidifiers, misted supermarket vegetables, or endoscopes and other medical equipment cleaned with tap water. Dr. Falkinham, for example, has isolated genetically identical strains of these bacteria from the lungs of affected patients and from household plumbing.

The incidence has given new urgency to understanding the environment in which they thrive, or at least survive: the nitrites and sulfites, dissolved oxygen, and the entire assemblage of microbes living in pipes. If this year’s samples collected from the industrialized Ohio River Valley resemble those collected last year, when two postdoctoral researchers, Eric Holinger and Kim Ross, made a similar water-sampling expedition along the relatively unpopulated areas along the Arkansas and Mississippi rivers, then the two systems will serve as a representative whole.

The researchers’ guerrilla sampling tactics — chatting up restaurant managers, scoping out public restrooms — provide a random sample and cover a broad, representative sample of taps people use on a regular basis.

What they’ve learned so far is this: Water drawn from the faucet is markedly different from the water that leaves the system’s treatment facility. “The ecology,” Dr. Pace said, “is the distribution system.”

Bacteria can evade disinfectant by slipping into an amoeba’s digestive system or inside protozoan cysts, persisting there for up to a hundred years. But many species survive in so-called biofilms — a sticky polymer made of DNA, proteins, and carbohydrates clinging to pipes like plaque. Back at the lab, Dr. Pace’s team is sequencing DNA in the water samples and finding evidence that this slime may be knocked loose, carrying organisms throughout a water distribution system.

Nicholas Ashbolt, a microbiologist at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia, says pathogens exist at greater concentrations in water supply systems with more chlorine, not less, and especially with another chlorine-based treatment chloramine. In a forthcoming review, Dr. Ashbolt also identified water systems as a “hot spot” for the emergence of antibiotic-resistant microorganisms.

Cooling towers and other man-made structures, he said, not only foster colonies of mycos and Legionella, but also deadlier organisms. Stagnant waters encourage their growth, and biofilms foster genetic transfer between organisms — resistant genes become more widespread among organisms surviving in the pipes.

“My fear is that we’re increasing the likelihood of engineered environments contributing to antibiotic resistance,” he said. “Everything we do has microbial consequence. If we can better understand the ecology, then we can better manage them rather than, ‘Let’s hit them with a bigger sledgehammer.’ ”

Filed under Drinking Water

May
11th

As the city’s infrastructure expands

DAILY NEWS
New York
As the city’s infrastructure expands, water bills at home are rising

If the city’s Water Board approves a 5.6% rate hike on water and sewer, the average homeowner would pay $991 a year, nearly double the average of $499 a decade ago.

BY TINA MOORE / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

WEDNESDAY, MAY 8, 2013, 11:13 PM

City Councilwoman Debi Rose (D-S.I.) says ‘the well is running dry’ when it comes to the pockets of the citizens of New York.
A glass of water from your tap is about to cost more.

The city’s Water Board has scheduled a vote Friday to boost water and sewer rates 5.6%.

If approved, the average homeowner will pay $991 a year, double the average bill of $499 a decade ago – an increase three times the inflation rate.

The reason for the rate hikes is buried right under New York’s feet.

Sand hogs working as far as 550 feet, or 55 stories, below ground are excavating a huge tunnel to connect the city to its reservoirs in the Catskills by 2026 at a cost of at least $4.7 billion.

The city’s water bills will be nearly double the rate of a decade ago.
But at a series of hearings on the rate hike, residents complained they were getting soaked.

“No pun intended, but the well is running dry here,” City Councilwoman Debi Rose (D-Staten Island), told the Daily News. “How many times can you go to the public’s pocket?”

The Department of Environmental Protection, which oversees the city’s water and sewer systems, said the tunnel is desperately needed – as are other massive construction projects driving up rates.

“There’s been more capital money spent on water-wastewater infrastructure than on schools, transportation, police, fire, etcetera,” DEP Commissioner Carter Strickland said.

RELATED: JUNIPER VALLEY PARK PLAGUED BY VANDALISM AND UNDER-AGED DRINKING

Croton Water Filtration Plant from inside the tunnels that will be used for water movement. Workers doing small scale excavation with hand tools.

Croton Water Filtration Plant from inside the tunnels that will be used for water movement. Workers doing small scale excavation with hand tools.


HOWARD SIMMONS/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

“You’re paying for a clean environment and public health.”

Some projects are mandated, like the troubled Croton Water Filtration Plant, being built ten stories beneath a Bronx golf course at a cost of $3.2 billion, $2 billion over initial estimates.

But the new water tunnel is by far the biggest project of all. The city currently gets its water through two tunnels built in 1917 and 1936. Both are in need of inspection and repairs, officials said.

The tunnel under construction, Water Tunnel #3, was first conceived in the 1950s, and its Manhattan section should be done by the end of this year, DEP officials said.

“Mayor Bloomberg understood the importance of pushing these things through,” DEP Deputy Commissioner Jim Roberts as he descended on a claustrophobic lift with a reporter to one of the tunnel construction sites in lower Manhattan.

Overview from high crane of site of the future Croton Water Filter Plant under construction

Overview from high crane of site of the future Croton Water Filter Plant under construction


SIMMONS, HOWARD/SIMMONS, HOWARD NEW YORK DAILY NEWS.

“This is a monumental step forward.”

The “shaft site” is one of 10 in lower Manhattan where water from the tunnel will feed smaller pipes for distribution to homes and businesses.

“Everything is driven by gravity,” Roberts marveled.

The section of the new tunnel that will stretch beneath Queens and Brooklyn isn’t expected to be complete for at least another 13 years.

RELATED: GONZALEZ: PAYING PRICE FOR PLANT COST OVERRUNS

Juniper Park Civic Association President Robert Holden said rising water bills are the No. 1 complaint from residents.
But as the tunnel has grown, so have water bills.

The city has borrowed $29.3 billion to pay for all the water and sewer projects, compared to $12.4 in outstanding debt a decade ago, an increase of 130%. The cost of paying the interest and principal on that debt is what’s driving water and sewer bills higher.

While most New Yorkers are unaware of the projects, they are feeling the pinch of higher water and sewer bills.

Kevin Forrestal, of the Hillcrest Estates Civic Association in Queens, said water and sewer charges are eating more and more into what he has to spend.

“Water is a very important thing, can’t live without it,” he said. “But do you have to do all these (projects) at once?”

Robert Holden, president of the Juniper Park Civic Association in Queens, said rising water bills were the number one call on his group’s complaint line.

“People would understand if there was a light at the end of the tunnel but there isn’t There’s a feeling that this is just going to keep going up,” he said.

On that point, New Yorkers are right.

Water bills are projected to increase anywhere from 7.5% to 7.9% in each of the next three years.

tmoore@nydailynews.com

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/water-board-vote-5-6-rate-hike-city-homeowners-article-1.1338923#ixzz2SzYyx7WZ

May
11th

California bureaucratic mess taps clean water

New York Times
May 10, 2013
Why Federal Efforts to Ensure Clean Tap Water Fail to Reach Faucets Nationwide
By FELICITY BARRINGER

MONSON, Calif. — Laura Garcia was halfway through the breakfast dishes when the spigot went dry. The small white tank beneath the sink that purified her undrinkable water had run out. Still, as annoying as that was, it was an improvement over the days before Ms. Garcia got her water filter, when she had to do her dishes using water from five-gallon containers she bought at a local store.

Ms. Garcia’s well water, like that of her neighbors, is laced with excessive nitrates, a pollutant associated with agriculture, septic systems and some soils. Five years ago, this small community of 49 homes near the southern end of the Central Valley took its place on California’s priority list of places in need of clean tap water.

Today the community is still stuck on that list, with no federal help in sight.

Monson’s situation has parallels in places around the country, large and small, seeking federal funds under the Safe Drinking Water Act. The Environmental Protection Agency distributes these funds to state agencies that are supposed to identify problems and underwrite solutions. By the E.P.A.’s calculations, no state has been as inept in distributing the money as California.

The state’s most recent priority list contained 4,925 applications. Some have been on the list for a dozen years. Some have been abandoned by the original applicants. Some are getting the federal funds quickly; others are in limbo. Of $1.5 billion in federal money sent to California and cycled through a revolving fund, $455 million lay fallow earlier this year while the priority list grew.

Monson, an unincorporated town in Tulare County, has a particular bureaucratic challenge. The community has no legal status, so it cannot apply on its own. Yet other entities, like Tulare County, which has offered to add pipelines to send clean water down the road to Monson from the town of Sultana’s water system, have only recently been empowered to apply on Monson’s behalf.

Local philanthropy, in the form of a Tulare County Rotary initiative, has tried to help, donating filters like the one under Ms. Garcia’s sink. These are welcome, Ms. Garcia said, speaking through an interpreter. But, she added, “That’s not a permanent solution.”

Since this cluster of 118 people does not qualify as a town, a water district or anything else that the California Department of Public Health recognizes as a valid applicant, another group must act on its behalf.

Monson is hardly alone. According to Jared Blumenfeld, the regional administrator of the E.P.A., nearly a quarter of all the small water systems in California are in the Central Valley. One-quarter of these dispense water that fails to meet all of the E.P.A’s health requirements.

To fix the problems, however, requires access to engineering and financial management resources beyond the reach of the needy communities, Mr. Blumenfeld said. “We require the state to be sure the people they fund have managerial, financial and administrative capacity to deal” with their water issues.

Though there is hope that Tulare County will be able to get the grant for Monson, he said, “some people, smart people, are trying to solve these problems and feeling frustrated.”

Mr. Blumenfeld himself was frustrated enough to issue a public rebuke to California last month. In a letter to Ron Chapman, the director of the state’s Public Health Department, he wrote, “Many of California’s critical drinking-water infrastructure needs remain unmet.”

He added: “California needs $39 billion in capital improvements through 2026 for water systems to continue to provide safe drinking water to the public. Given this tremendous need, it is crucial that California fully utilize” the revolving fund that is the repository for the federal aid, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars in loan repayments from local water systems. The state was given 60 days to report how it was going to fix the internal accounting problems and get money out.

Does Monson’s long wait reflect a larger pattern of undistributed funds in small communities? In a written response, the spokeswoman for the California Department of Public Health, Anita Gore, replied, “Small water systems often lack the technical expertise and funding to prepare funding applications, hire consultants to get their projects ‘shovel-ready’ and to make them happen.”

She added that the state “has found that these systems require greater assistance than larger water systems, and is working to simplify its procedures and provide more technical assistance.”

More than 800 of the applicants on the state priority list represent communities of fewer than 100 people.

Maria Herrera, who works for the Community Water Center, a local nonprofit, said “the process for Monson to secure funding to solve its drinking water challenges has had many false starts and roadblocks.” She added that the difficulty in satisfying the state “has delayed Monson’s ability to get clean drinking water and forced residents to live without safe drinking water.”

At the moment, Tulare County is planning on Monson’s behalf, and has suggested alternatives, including that pipeline from Sultana.

Britt Fussel, the public works director in Tulare County, said he also hoped to use grant money not just to study different options but also to have one ready to go. “It’s easy to find money for shovel-ready projects; it’s hard to find money for planning,” he said.

This approach, too, was rejected. “I’m in the process of modifying the scope of work,” Mr. Fussel said.

The public health spokeswoman, Ms. Gore, said the state was working closely with the county to expedite things. She wrote: “Tulare County submitted an application on behalf of the unincorporated community of Monson in early 2012. We anticipate the planning project will be completed in mid-2014. Typically, construction projects run about three years to completion, but that depends on what options are identified in the planning study.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/11/us/safe-drinking-water-elusive-for-many-in-california.html?emc=tnt&tntemail1=y&_r=0

Filed under Drinking Water, NYC Media

Apr
21st

ALERT: NYCDEP drops USGS funding for NYC data collection

Folks,

The New York City DEP has decided to stop cooperative funding for the United States Geological Survey (USGS) to monitor data collection from 213 groundwater stations, 10 surface-water stations, 1 meteorological station, and 133 water-quality stations.

Why? We want to know why? Are they going to stop monitoring? Are they contracting out to one of their friendly private companies?

The discontinued program was funded by New York City Department of Environmental Protection and the USGS through the Cooperative Water Program. This funding provided the resources necessary for operation of the USGS hydrologic-monitoring network in the City, which provides the information needed to monitor regional environmental conditions and undertake many types of scientific research. Please alert your Federal, State, and local representatives about how USGS data is being used, and what a loss in data collection would mean. The usefulness and necessity of this data is apparent.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is a scientific agency of the United States government. The scientists of the USGS study the landscape of the United States, its natural resources, and the natural hazards that threaten it. The organization has four major science disciplines, concerning biology, geography, geology, and hydrology. The USGS is a fact-finding research organization with no regulatory responsibility.

Created by an act of Congress in 1879, the USGS has evolved over the ensuing 125 years, matching its talent and knowledge to the progress of science and technology. Today, the USGS stands as the sole science agency for the Department of the Interior. It is sought out by thousands of partners and customers for its natural science expertise and its vast earth and biological data holdings. The USGS is the science provider of choice in accessing the information and understanding to help resolve complex natural resource problems across the Nation and around the world.

This notice was posted on the USGS webpage: http://ny.water.usgs.gov/ See the “Gages Remain Unfunded” section towards the middle of the page for the most recent information. It is posted below (as of April 21, 2013), but go to the page so you can see what we are going to miss.


NOTICE (04/09/2013) — Funding dropped for USGS monitoring network in the five boroughs of New York City.

Data collection from 213 groundwater stations, 10 surface-water stations, 1 meteorological station, and 133 water-quality stations in the five boroughs of New York and extreme western Nassau County will be suspended at the end of the month (May 1, 2013) due to elimination of the program by a funding partner. Historic data from these stations will continue to be available on the USGS National Water Information System: Web Interface. A complete list of stations to be discontinued is available at: real-time water data page or map.

For more information or to help support these sites please contact Ron Busciolano (rjbuscio@usgs.gov) or Stephen Terracciano (saterrac@usgs.gov) at the USGS New York Water Science Center, Coram Program Office at (631) 736-0783 or at the emails listed above.

Apr
21st

Salt Marches in Ecosystem Services – a great illustraton

Folks, this is such a great illustration. Fun to watch. Thank you NOAA.
Click here

or use this link:
http://oceanservice.noaa.gov/education/kits/estuaries/media/supp_estuar03a_marsh.htmlsupp_estuar03a_marsh.html

Filed under Soil, Storms and Runoff, Water