SWIM's quarterly public meeting was hosted by Waterfront Alliance on October 29th, the 7th anniversary of Superstorm Sandy. An appropriate time and place to talk about stormwater matters! We talked about the City Council bill Intro 1620 calling for a 5 Borough Shoreline Resilience Plan and the public hearing that took place earlier in the day.
Waterfront Alliance gave a presentation on their Coastal Resilience Task Force and updated us on some important forums they'll be organizing with the Dept. of City Planning for the City's Comprehensive Waterfront Plan.
Riverkeeper shared their equitable water rate restructuring modeling tool and report they've been working on with the Natural Resources Defense Council and Valour Water Analytics. The NYC Dept. of Environmental Protection is embarking on a study of how they can restructure the current wastewater charge to accurately account for a property's stormwater runoff and how it impacts the sewer system. The modeling tool and report will help inform the City's study. SWIM recently published some recommendations for the study which we've shared with DEP and the NYC Waterboard. The study must have a robust public engagement component! Cities around the country have already restructured their water rates to better address the impacts of stormwater runoff on their sewer systems. NYC is only just beginning to study the possibility and they say the study will take 3 years to conduct! See our blog posts on this topic here.
Our friends at +POOL stopped by to update us on their +POOL Light water quality monitoring project in the East River and walk with us down to Pier 17 to see the installation in action. The public art sculpture lights up pink when the water isn't safe to swim in and blue when it's clean enough to swim.
They have a real time dashboard
on their website that shows what they're measuring and the data they are compiling. This kind of real time data is what recreational and educational water users in NYC dream of !! We hope the +POOL installation will shine a light on how the City could do something like this in our local waterways so citizens would know - in real time, when standing at the water's edge, if a waterbody is safe to access or not. Yay + POOL and partners!