Monday, April 14, 2008

Suffolk County Water Authority Is Importing Water

SCWA and Southold Town Board Don’t Want The Public To Know That Suffolk County Water Authority Is Importing Water

I personally resent any implication that we are withholding ANY information about public water supply on the north fork or planning some nefarious scheme to bring water in "to support new residential developments". Stephen M. Jones SCWA CEO (2/7/2008)

Alternative B. Water Importation
The proposed well is an integral part of the ultimate plan of importation of water into Southold. After many years of developing local water supply sources, the SCWA realized that the best way of providing contaminant free water into Southold is to supply it from sources outside of the town that are known for their excellent water quality. The Sound Ave well field is one such place. As previously mentioned, this well field is located essentially on the "mainland" of Suffolk County, and so it benefits from the vast resources of the deeper Magothy aquifer as opposed to the all of the other wells in the Southold Low which draw from the shallow upper Glacial aquifer.
In the matter of the Application of SUFFOLK COUNTY WATER AUTHORITY for NYS DEC Approval of the Operation of Well NO.4 at the Sound Avenue Well Field

Save Cutchogue does not have convenient access to the precise figures, on information and belief in 2006 of the 946,000,000 gallons of public water used in Southold Town, 4% (37,840,000 gallons) of that water was piped in from out of Town. Save Cutchogue estimates that in 2007 5-10% of public water used in Southold Town was imported from out of Town. It is not known if the percentage of water imported will continue to increase.

A regional pipeline system to carry uncontaminated ground water from eastern Riverhead is not recommended because of economic, institutional and social concerns.
Comprehensive Water Resources Plan Suffolk County (1/87) pg 12

The town must remain reliant on its own groundwater resources. The committee does not advocate the construction of a regional pipeline from areas outside the town. The establishment of a regional pipeline would not only increase the rate of development of open space and farmland, but also encourage greater densities than desired, causing the loss of the rural nature of the town The financial costs associated with such a system would be unnecessarily burdensome to town residents.
Town of Southold Water Advisory Committee; Report to Southold Town Board; Aug. 29, 1983

Water is one resource we can't do without and can't very well import. We all need to consider the effect of paving over more and more of the surface with roads, parking lots and roofs and preventing the rain from soaking into the ground. ... We need to consider the water budget of Long Island -- it is as mathematical as your own money budget. ... The only income is the rain that falls; ... Out of this income is deducted the immediate run off, influenced by the area that we seal off with roads and roofs and by the vegetation. Then there is the percentage which evaporates from the surface and that transpired by plants. The rest either remains in the soil or percolates down into the reservoir or aquifer. Once there, it moves toward the nearest shoreline and much flows out into the salt water. This amount, which might be called "wasted", except that it is necessary to many marine organisms, is our renewable water resource. If we use more than this, the water level will be lowered, eventually to a point where salt water will flow in. Most of that which we "use" ends up either in cesspools or municipal sewer systems. The cesspools drain back into the aquifer, the sewers into the salt water. Both are wrong since the former pollutes our only source of water, the latter depletes it. The ultimate solution, since it is unlikely that our water demand will decrease, is to treat all effluents to a point where they may be safely re-introduced to the aquifer. Even if this is done, there is a limited amount which could rationally be withdrawn, so we must abolish the idea that Long Island can take unlimited expansion in the name of "progress". Our thinking must progress to the point where we cen accept the limitations set by our environment.
The Long Story of Long Island by H.J. Evans, Jr. (1971)