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Demand Alternatives to Flushing Mud Down the Esopus Creek


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Esopus_turbidity_82121ae8d7_200New York State is initiating the first-ever study of the environmental impacts of New York City’s discharges of muddy water to the Lower Esopus Creek, and we must ensure that the study—and its analysis of alternatives to those discharges—is comprehensive.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has finally required the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to conduct the environmental review that Riverkeeper and others have long called for. This study will evaluate the potential impacts of DEP’s requested modification of its Kensico SPDES permit, which would authorize its discharges to the Lower Esopus to continue.

The City began muddy releases from its Ashokan Reservoir in Ulster County into the Lower Esopus Creek in 2010, to reduce turbidity in the drinking water sent to NYC, without conducting an environmental review or even considering the impacts of those releases to the creek or neighboring properties. Residents of downstream Esopus communities deserve a comprehensive environmental study of the method that DEP has chosen as the cheapest way to control turbidity in its Catskill Water Supply System—and its potential impacts on the Lower Esopus Creek and the Hudson River.

take_action_buttonNow is the time to speak up and help ensure that this environmental impact study, and in particular its review of potential alternatives to damaging a precious local resource, the Lower Esopus Creek, is performed correctly and completely. The deadline for public comment is July 8.

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