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Water System Merger Underscores Long Island's Water Woes

Submitted by Elizabeth Mooney on Thu, 2012-03-22 13:33.

The village of Farmingdale just elected a new mayor and trustees this week. One of their first tasks? A major decision regarding the fate of the village's water system.

There are more than 60 water systems on Long  Island, and a dizzying array of agencies overseeing its  safety.There are more than 60 water systems on Long Island, and a dizzying array of agencies overseeing its safety.The current water system has become too expensive and lacks the infrastructure to accommodate future needs. So the Nassau County village is considering merging with a neighboring system -- either Bethpage or Suffolk.

While the debate may be confined to a village of around 9,000 people, it underscores a larger issue that all of Long Island faces. 

Right now, the there are more than 60 local water suppliers across Long Island. As the Rauch Foundation notes, they are managed and monitored by a dizzying array of federal, state, and local agencies.

With water management so fragmented, Long Island is essentially left with no one in charge of it.

One result appears to be declining water quality. A draft report recently released by the Suffolk County Department of Health Services showed a rapid rise in the levels of harmful nitrates in the underground aquifers, along with pesticides, volatile organic compounds and a degradation of the coastal environment.


NYLCV Blog | Filed Under: Water, Public Health,Suffolk, Nassau, Long Island
 

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