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North River back online for primary treatment, Riverkeeper water quality data in

The North River is back online for primary treatment and chlorine disinfection, except for a few glitches today. Read the full update from DEP. All beach advisories are still in effect.

Meanwhile, Riverkeeper has been hard at work sampling the water on the Hudson, drawing some contrasts between their results and the ones DEP has been reporting. Keep reading for their latest summary.

From Riverkeeper:

The DEP has posted water quality sampling results for 7/21 for the waters potentially affected by the sewage discharges related to the fire and temporary closure of the North River sewage treatment plant…Riverkeeper and our science partners also sampled on 7/21 from the Tappan Zee bridge to the Battery. In the section of River west of Manhattan, we sampled in a grid pattern to determine the impacts on the Manhattan shoreline as well as mid channel and on the new Jersey side of the River.

Overview:
1) Our data adds new and different information to DEP’s data, especially as it relates to the pattern and degree of contamination in the near shore environment.
2) Our data shows that the NJ shoreline, mid-channel and Manhattan shoreline data are very different. It matters where one samples and our data shows extreme pollution levels along the NY shoreline, based on our sampling results from nearshore sampling locations. To the best of our knowledge, DEP did not take samples in the nearshore area.
3) For protecting public health it is important that people are aware of the potentially high levels of pollution in the shoreline environment because that is where people generally contact the water.
4) The highest level of contamination in DEP’s sampling results numbers appears to be 400 Entero cells/100ml; our additional near shore sampling has the highest count from the same day of 104,620 Entero cells/100ml.

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SWIM has been supported by generous grants from the Lily Auchincloss Foundation (2012) and the New York City Environmental Fund (2009 - 2011).
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