Riverkeeper applauds New York State’s renewed commitment to clean, safe water
New legislation expands drinking water protections for millions
ALBANY, NY — Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature just took historic steps to ensure that our waterways and public health are protected. The recently approved Water Infrastructure Act of 2017 invests $2.5 billion in the the state’s aging water infrastructure. Additionally, companion legislation requires virtually all public drinking water supplies to be tested to identify hidden contamination. Riverkeeper applauds the actions taken by Governor Cuomo and the legislature and issues the following statements:
Riverkeeper President Paul Gallay said: “Last week, Governor Cuomo and the legislature did more to protect the Empire State’s rivers and drinking water than at any other time since the modern environmental movement began more than a half a century ago. This new spending will solve a host of pollution problems emanating from aging water treatment plants, leaking septic systems, old landfills, lead in water supply lines, overburdened stormwater systems and an expanding dairy farm industry.”
Riverkeeper Chairman Joseph Boren said: “The Water Infrastructure Investment Act of 2017 and the expanded drinking water safety monitoring program are the culmination of more than 50 years of advocacy by Riverkeeper and countless community activists. Together, these new enactments make New York the gold standard for state-level programs to improve water infrastructure, monitor drinking water safety and protect public water supplies at their source.”
Riverkeeper Water Quality Program Director Dan Shapley said: “More than 2.5 million New Yorkers are served by public drinking water supplies that — due to their relatively small size — have not had to test for emerging contaminants, such as the industrial toxics known as PFOS and PFOA that have caused the crises in Hoosick Falls and Newburgh. This legislation will ensure that all public water supplies, no matter their size, are tested and the public is protected.”
Paul Gallay has published this blog piece, further detailing the significance of the Water Infrastructure Act and expanded water safety monitoring.
Riverkeeper is a member-supported watchdog organization dedicated to defending the Hudson River and its tributaries and protecting the drinking water supply of nine million New York City and Hudson Valley residents. For more than 50 years, Riverkeeper has helped to establish globally recognized standards for waterway and watershed protection and serves as the model for the growing Waterkeeper movement that includes more than 300 Keeper programs around the globe Visit us at riverkeeper.org.