In response to requests from the State Department of Environmental Conservation and municipalities, the Environmental Protection Agency stated that it is providing assistance in assessing drinking water and wastewater facilities across the state. To date, according to the EPA, it has assessed 40 drinking water facilities and 12 wastewater treatment plants. None of the facilities, the agency said, required additional assistance.
The EPA did, however, sample the water in Reynolds Channel on Nov. 15 to determine the concentrations of raw or partially treated sewage released from the Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant. According to the agency, the concentration of fecal coliforms, a common group of bacteria associated with human waste, and dissolved oxygen, are under New York state limits, but the EPA advised people to avoid activities that could bring them into contact with the waters in and around the Bay Park plant.
Bochner said that the discharge remains beyond levels permitted by environmental law, and that pollution from the bay seeped into the ocean during the storm, and urged city officials to call on the EPA and Nassau County Health Department to conduct tests. “I keep getting calls from surfers asking what the water quality is like,” he said. “What’s coming out of Bay Park is still bad.”