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Water Quality & Stormwater Education

a project of the Stormwater Consortium of Rockland County

Clean Above means Clean Below!

Protect our waterways and drinking water sources for generations to come!

Environmental Educator : Jennifer Zunino-Smith ( Jmz75@cornell.edu; 845-429-7085)

Clean Above means Clean Below!

Why should we care? Because everything that flows over the surface in Rockland County will soak into the ground or flow to surface waters where our drinking water comes from, and where we recreate. A significant amount of Rockland County’s drinking water comes from underground aquifers. Our other sources of drinking water come from streams, lakes, or rivers above ground (such as Lake DeForest) that is treated at a Water Treatment Plan .

Treatment processes cannot remove all pollutants, therefore what enters our local waters is ultimately what we drink! The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has eloquently presented this concept in their short video. Keeping our waterways clean has tremendous benefits for your health, your property, your recreation, your drinking water supply, and will ensure its benefit for future generations.

The information provided herein has been accrued through Cornell Cooperative Extension, Rockland County to provide the public with a knowledge of the need to preserve water quality and improve stormwater, why there are regulations that exist regarding stormwater, how your activities impact your water quality, and what you can do to improve water quality and stormwater runoff. Use the underlined hyperlinks provided throughout to explore further information!

Water Quality & Stormwater Education Homepage

Interactive Maps:

Use the information contained within, particularly the Regulating Clean Water section to understand the SCRC's interactive map and find out all you can about your watershed and local waters! Discover the watershed you live in, your local waters’ name (if it has one), its classification, or if it’s been listed on the state’s Waterbody Inventory/Priority Waterbodies List (WI/PWL). Using the WI/PWL data, are your local waterbodies impaired? Perhaps your house is located in a watershed with an impaired water. Even if your local waterway is not Impaired, it may ultimately drain to the Hudson River, which is. Using EPA’s data, for what Pollutants are they impaired ( use the ‘More Info’ hyperlink provided in this data table, or visit EPA How’s my Waterway to see EPA’s full history of your waterbody ). Does EPA suggest that your waterway needs a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL)? A TMDL is the total amount of a pollutant the waterbody can receive daily and still meet Water Quality Standards.

Has New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) selected your waterway to be listed on EPA’s Clean Water Act Section 303(d) list (search for ‘Rockland County’ on this list). What has the state determined is the cause of the pollutant and the suspected source of impairment? Are there are any SPDES or NPDES permitted discharges to your local waterway? The Discharge Monitoring Report (DMR) Pollutant Loading Tool is designed to help you determine who is discharging, what pollutants they are discharging and how much, and where they are discharging . What can you find out about those permitted discharges?

NYSDEC’s DEC info Locator Interactive Map:

See the NYSDEC’s interactive map to access available documents and public data pertaining to environmental quality. Through this interactive map you can view and download water permits, water quality data, and further information.

See information contained within for further explanation of terminology.

The views and opinions expressed and contained within are those of the author and does not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the NYSDEC, the EPA or any other site referenced. Mapping analysis should not be utilized in real-world analytic products as they are based only on very limited and dated open source information. Assumptions made within are not reflective of the position of any referenced site. Information from these pages has been pulled from USEPA, EPA Water, EPA- Long Island Sound Study, NYCDEP, NYSDEC, NYS GIS Clearinghouse, NYC Water, NYS Conservationist April 2015, Cornell Cooperative Extension, Thompson Reuters WestLaw (NYCRR), USGS, USDA.

Click here for additional cited works & resources. 


Jennifer Zunino-Smith
Environmental Resource Educator
(845) 429-7085 x125

Last updated September 18, 2023