New York Rural Water : News

January 28, 2011

Delaware River Commission To Hold Hearing on Natural Gas Regulations

Category: General, Water — New York Rural Water @ 4:40 PM

The Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) is holding a public hearing on its proposed Draft Natural Gas Development Regulations. Two different public hearing sessions will be held from 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. and from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on February 22, 2011 at the Liberty High School Auditorium in Liberty, NY. To learn more about these hearings and the proposed rule making visit http://www.state.nj.us/drbc.

January 25, 2011

Canajoharie makes deal with bottler

Category: General, Water — New York Rural Water @ 10:55 AM

Crystal Geyser’s owners want to use village water supply

Village officials and a Tennessee-based water bottling company have signed a letter of intent to begin the process of building a plant that will tap into Canajoharie’s water supply.

CG Roxane of Benton, Tenn., wants to build the facility on village-owned watershed property in Ephratah. The company, which bottles Crystal Geyser Natural Spring Water, has six manufacturing facilities nationwide.

Canajoharie Mayor Leigh Fuller said today CG Roxane already has sent hydrologists to study the site and he expects them to return in February.

“They want to make sure we have enough water,” Fuller said. “We’re sure there will be. These people are very thorough.”

CG Roxane officials will invest about $20 million in the new plant, according to a village news release. The company will purchase the land from the village and pay a royalty on water withdrawn from the springs in the village for use by the bottling plant.

Fuller said CG Roxane could employ 40 to 50 people during its first phase of operation, and that number could rise to 90.

“We know it would be a wonderful thing for Canajoharie, but it would also help Ephratah,” he said.

The company wants to sign three contracts for royalties for 99 years each.

“They’re in it for the long haul,” Fuller said. “That’s what we want. They intend to come in and stay.”

Fuller said the biggest obstacle remaining is with the electrical infrastructure. National Grid may have to upgrade its substation in Ephratah to accommodate the new plant’s demands, Fuller said.

CG Roxane officials want the plant to be up and running in 12 to 14 months, but National Grid has said upgrading could not be completed until 2013, Fuller said.

Canajoharie residents and businesses have seen their water and sewer rates double this year, as village officials cope with the loss off Beech-Nut, which is moving manufacturing from its century-old home in the village to a new plant in the town of Florida.

Beech-Nut already is using a lot less water, Fuller said, and water usage will drop even further once the move is complete by mid-March.

“We’re still hoping something will happen with the Beech-Nut plant,” he said.

On orders from the state, the village three years ago upgraded its sewer and water system to accommodate Beech-Nut’s capacity, and still owes about $3 million in outstanding loans.

Taken from leaderherald.com

January 24, 2011

EPA’s guidance on recommendations for monitoring of hexavalent chromium

Category: General, Water — New York Rural Water @ 1:50 PM

Ensuring safe drinking water for all is a top priority for EPA, state drinking water agencies, and drinking water systems across the country. National primary drinking water regulations set the maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 0.1 mg/L for total chromium, which includes chromium-6 (hexavalent chromium), and requires community and non-transient non-community water systems to test for chromium at the entry point to the distribution system. The chromium standard was established in 1991 based on the best available science.

EPA regularly re-evaluates drinking water standards; a rigorous and comprehensive review of chromium-6 health effects began following the release of the toxicity studies by the National Toxicology Program in 2008. In September, 2010, EPA released a draft of the scientific assessment (Toxicological Review of Hexavalent Chromium) for public comment and external peer review. When this human health assessment is finalized in 2011, EPA will carefully review the conclusions and consider all relevant information to determine if a new standard needs to be set.

In the interim period, EPA is providing the following guidance to water systems on how they may monitor for chromium-6 in addition to the monitoring they are required to perform for total chromium. EPA believes that the enhanced monitoring will enable public water systems (PWSs) to: better inform their consumers about the levels of chromium-6 in their drinking water, evaluate the degree to which other forms of chromium are transformed into chromium-6 in their drinking water and assess the degree to which existing treatment is affecting the levels of chromium-6.

Click here to find out more.

January 19, 2011

Too much of a good thing? Fluoride water levels to be lowered

Category: General, Water — New York Rural Water @ 10:25 AM

Only a century ago, Americans could expect to lose most of their teeth by age 40. But, since fluoridation of tap water was introduced in the mid-twentieth century, the incidence of tooth decay has nosedived. Now, however, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the EPA have announced that they want to reduce the maximum allowable fluoride levels in municipal water supplies as recent data showed that more than one in three U.S. children have fluorosis, a condition caused by an excess of fluoride that can lead to tooth enamel mottling and discoloration. From 1987 to 2004, the proportion of American 12 to 15 year-olds suffering from fluorosis is reported to have increased from 23 percent to 41 percent.

Fluoride exposure has risen as more and more children now receive it in toothpaste and from dental applications. Thus, though
fluoride was added to tap water at the level of one part per million (ppm) when it was discovered that the chemical reduced cavities, the HHS wants the fluoride concentration in public water supplies reduced to 0.7 ppm. This is on the low end of the government recommended levels of 0.7 to 1.2 ppm established in 1962.

New York State Oral Health Coalition Chair and ACSH advisor Tom Curran supports the proposed fluoride reduction measure. In a
letter, he comments:

They [public health officials] want to reduce fluorosis and this is appropriate…[W]e support the reduction of fluoride in municipal water from 1 mg/L to 0.7mg/L now with the ubiquitous use of fluoride toothpaste. Although I agree with Dr. Liu [President of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry] that fluoride toothpaste is a bigger problem when used by children in an unsupervised setting. That is the reason you see fluorosis [even] in communities that don’t have municipal water fluoridation. You can expect [anti-fluoridation groups] to try to have a field day with this announcement. [Fluoride Action Network Executive Director Paul Connett, for example, has] targeted NYC along with 6 other areas for his campaign for 2011. Be prepared.

ACSH’s Dr. Elizabeth Whelan, who believes the addition of fluoride to tap water was one of the most beneficial public health
measures of the twentieth century, expresses her concern. “The anti-fluoride activists will be all over this and will try to convince the public that fluoride is a government-sanctioned poison that should be banned altogether. We’ve had fluoridation in New York City since 1965, and now kids are also using fluoridated toothpaste. If the combined use of other fluoride sources is causing too much fluorosis, then why not try to lower the amount of fluoride in toothpaste and convince dentists that kids in areas with fluoridated water don’t need extra fluoride applications?”

ACSH’s Dr. Gilbert Ross, however, points out that the new advisory may not be off-base: “Though fluorosis is not the worst thing in
the world, perhaps now we should be more flexible and allow the recommended fluoride levels to be reduced as needed for continued protection against cavities while curbing fluorosis.”

This information was found online at: http://www.acsh.org/factsfears/newsID.2232/news_detail.asp

January 7, 2011

Water suit takes on GE

Category: General, Water — New York Rural Water @ 11:38 AM

The Saratoga County Water Authority has sued General Electric Co. in federal court to recover $27 million it claims it spent to avoid PCBs in the Hudson River.

The SCWA claims in the suit that it would have spent less if it had been able to locate its Hudson River pumping station closer to the county’s southern population centers instead of in the town of Moreau at the northern end of the county.

“As prudent government officials they had to take into account what the effects of GE’s PCB contamination might be,” Donald W. Boyajian of Dreyer, Boyajian, the authority’s law firm, said Thursday.

The legal papers cite SWCA as spending at least $62 million on the water system, including $27 million for the water treatment plant in Moreau and $35 million to build the pipelines to carry water south.

This is the fourth lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court against GE by a municipality drawing water from the river. The other lawsuits were brought by the towns of Waterford, Halfmoon and Stillwater.

In a statement Thursday, GE said avoiding PCBs was not the reason county officials built the water treatment plant in Moreau.

GE said that the location was selected to provide “a plentiful water source in the northern part of the county, where future residential and commercial growth was anticipated;” the county owned the water plant site; and that the location was picked before the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency decided to dredge the PCB-contaminated river bottom.

“If, as the complaint states, county officials chose not to locate a water intake further south due to the presence of PCBs in the river, this was a decision not based on sound science,” the GE statement says.

Boyajian dismissed GE’s contentions about the decision to build in Moreau. He emphasized that a site closer to the county’s population centers would have been preferred but officials were deeply worried about the impact of PCBs in drinking water supplies.

GE stated that PCB levels in the river “have been consistently below federal drinking water standards.”

PCBS — polychlorinated biphenyls, a suspected carcinogen — contaminated the river when they were dumped from GE plants in Hudson Falls and Fort Edward.

Tapping into the Hudson River to supply a countywide water system was long discussed and was a political issue. In 2002, engineering firm Clough, Harbour recommended the county continue to use the 1990 Intermunicipal Water Supply Study Master Plan and 1995 Updated Master Plan.

“The original 1990 study recommended the phased implementation of a county-wide water system using the Upper Hudson River as the county’s main raw water source,” the Clough, Harbour study stated.

That occurred as county Republicans fought with Saratoga Springs Democrats over plans to use Saratoga Lake as a city water supply.

The development of the Luther Forest Technology Campus added to the push of a county water program to supply water needed in computer chip manufacturing. GlobalFoundries is now building a computer chip factory at the campus.

Taken from timesunion.com