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PNS Daily Newscast - October 23, 2017 


We begin the week with President Donald Trump urging GOP House members to support the Senate budget bill; a new report tracks a growing “right” to discriminate at both the state and federal level; and we will let you know why Trump budget cuts are being labeled a threat to waterways in the Midwest.

Daily Newscasts

LI Water Quality “Depends On Us”

Yes, it's back. Algal blooms from nitrogen pollution can lead to massive fish kills in Long Island harbors and bays. (NOAA)
Yes, it's back. Algal blooms from nitrogen pollution can lead to massive fish kills in Long Island harbors and bays. (NOAA)
June 14, 2017

NEW YORK - Clean water "Depends On Us." That's the message of an ongoing campaign to raise public awareness about the impact of nitrogen from septic systems on Long Island waters.

Home septic systems are the primary source of nitrogen pollution on Long Island, both in ground water and in the bays and harbors. According to Carl LoBue, New York oceans program director for The Nature Conservancy, that pollution is fouling the water again - and just in time for Father's Day outings.

"Sadly, we're experiencing harmful algal blooms like brown tide in a lot of the South Shore bays," he said, "making it unfortunate for the folks who plan to get out and do some fishing and recreation this weekend."

The Nature Conservancy is conducting its "Depends On Us" campaign to draw attention to the importance of clean water for health, recreation and the environment.

LoBue said septic systems that remove 75 percent of the nitrogen from home wastewater have been developed and are available, but new houses still are being built using the old technology.

"We have yet to require new development to use these new systems," he said, "but that's being discussed and, perhaps by next year, that will be in place."

For existing homes, LoBue pointed out that Suffolk County recently took action to help homeowners clean up residential waste.

"We have a county rebate program that just passed that's going to help subsidize people for phasing out and replacing old cesspools and septic systems with newer models that remove nitrogen," he said.

LoBue said this year's state budget also includes $75 million to help defray some of the cost of installing the new septic systems.

More information is online at nature.org.

Andrea Sears, Public News Service - NY