STARTING IN 2009
QUASSAIC CREEK WATERSHED ALLIANCE SOUNDS ALARM ON WATERSHED VULNERABILITIES
2009 — Quassaick Creek Watershed Alliance (QCWA) begins working with Orange County on its watershed management plan. During this time, the QCWA realized that Lake Washington was within the Quassaick Creek drainage and became concerned about vulnerabilities to the drinking water due to contaminated runoff from the roads and Stewart Air National Guard Base.
QCWQ Member, Peter Smith, conducts Watershed Tours to educate officials and the community on our watershed resources and need for its protection. Mr. Smith is a Newburgh Resident, former Architect, and former Board Member of the Orange County Municipal Planning Federation 2013 - 2015.
LEARN ABOUT OUR WATERSHED
FEBRUARY 5, 2015
Riverkeeper Alerts NYSDEC Over Watershed Concerns
February 5, 2015 — Riverkeeper reaches out to New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) with several water quality issues and Clean Water Act concerns regarding the watershed of the City of Newburgh.
MAY 2, 2016
CITY OF NEWBURGH DECLARES STATE OF EMERGENCY
MAY 2, 2016 — "This State of Emergency has been declared due to the discovery of Perfluorooctane Sulfonate (PFOS) in Silver Stream and Washington Lake, posing a potential threat to public health and safety." — Michael G. Ciaravino, City Manager
FEBRUARY 18, 2016
NEW YORK STATE'S WATER QUALITY RAPID RESPONSE TEAM FORMS
February 18, 2016 — Under Governor Andrew Cuomo, New York State forms Water Quality Rapid Response Team, headed up by the New York State Departments of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) and Health (NYSDOH).
"The move comes amid criticism of the response to water contamination around the country, including in New York. New York officials have been trying to find a remedy, in particular, to groundwater contamination in the small village of Hoosick Falls near the Vermont border."
"We want to have the best state program in the nation to preserve water quality and spot problems before they come," Cuomo said at a news conference on Long Island."
SOURCE: LO HUD./USA TODAY
MAY 12, 2016
RIVERKEEPERS CALLS ON STEWART AIR NATIONAL GUARD AND THE PORT AUTHORITY OF NY & NJ TO CEASE & DESIST PFAS POLLUTION
May 12, 2016 — Riverkeeper asks for:
1. Immediately and permanently prevent discharge from the outfall at Recreation Pond.
2. Investigate and monitor the source(s) of contamination.
3. Ensure any contaminated water undergoes full remedial treatment before its discharge.
4. Ensure that any ongoing discharges from properties to the drinking water supply of the City of Newburgh are treated, at minimum, to standards consistent with Class A drinking water.
5. Institutionalize a spill reporting system with the City of Newburgh to assist in the protection of its drinking water.
June 7, 2016
CITY OF NEWBURGH WATER SUPPLY SWITCHED TO CATSKILL AQUEDUCT
June 7, 2016 — City of Newburgh begins utilizing drinking water from the New York City supply (Catskill Aqueduct).
June 20, 2016
City of newburgh holds public meeting about PFAS contamination in water supply
June 20, 2016 — Newburgh held a public meeting and hosted a panel discussion that included EPA, DEC, DOH, Riverkeeper and city officials.
JULY 1, 2016
riverkeeper calls for source water protection in light of pfas contamination
July 1, 2016 — "This Case Study demonstrates that New York State has a comprehensive legal framework for protecting source waters, but its implementation is both incomplete and uncoordinated. While additional legal authorities may be needed, there are many tools available now that should be utilized immediately to protect and restore source waters, even while emergency response measures are in effect."
READ CASE STUDY
AUGUST 12, 2016
Stewart Air National Guard Base Declared A Superfund Site
August 12, 2016 — The NY State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) lists the Stewart Air National Guard base as a Class 2 State Superfund Site, and names Stewart International Airport as a P Site. A demand letter is sent to the Department of Defense (DOD) to perform remedial investigations and develop remedial plans.
SOURCE: NYSDEC | NY TIMES | WAMC
AUGUST 7, 2018
City of newburgh sues 23 Defendants that have manufactured and sold PFAS, or owned and/or operated the ANG Base and Airport to clean up the PFAS contamination in the City watershed
AUGUST 7, 2018 — "The City has spent more than two years asking owners and operators of the Base and Airport to stop using PFAS and to prevent the ongoing discharge of contaminated water, originating from the Base, from flowing into the streams that feeds Washington Lake. While the United States Air Force, New York Air National Guard, and Port Authority of New York and New Jersey may have stopped using AFFF containing PFOS sometime in 2017 after the State listed two long-chained PFAS, namely PFOS and PFOA, as hazardous substances, they continue to use AFFF containing short-chained PFAS at the Base and Airport. The City has now asked for the Court to intervene. "
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JUNE 5, 2019
1,001 Days Since Governor Cuomo Promised Emerging Contaminant Testing; STILL NO ACTION TO PROTECT SMALL COMMUNITIES
June 5, 2019 — "Advocates joined Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried and other legislators in Albany today to call for immediate action to protect New York’s drinking water. Assembly Member Gottfried has introduced new legislation (A.7839) establishing a list of dangerous chemicals to be tested for in drinking water, and setting a deadline for the New York State Department of Health (DOH) to implement this testing.