As the season draws to a close, Lake George partner groups, including the Fund for Lake George, Lake George Waterkeeper Program and the Lake George Association, along with state and local governments, continue to search for the source of contamination to the lake water at Million Dollar Beach. The Department of Environmental Conservation closed the beach again recently after detecting bacterial contamination.
“Unfortunately, Lake George continues to be compromised through contamination from an apparent human source at Million Dollar Beach,” said Chris Navitsky, the Lake George Waterkeeper, in a press release issued by the Fund for Lake George. “While tracing the exact origin of the contamination is a complicated issue, we are confident this problem can be solved with a focused, science-driven plan of action.”
“It is imperative that the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation does everything within its power to ensure the Queen of American Lakes is protected,” added Navitsky. “There needs to be more transparency regarding the data generated and a full-court press must be made with a routine monitoring plan that thoroughly checks all possible sources. Every resource should be applied to find answers to solve the problem.”
Randy Rath, project manager for the Lake George Association, said the spikes have disappeared but testing continues by the DEC, village and town. They have dye- and smoke-tested sewer pipes but haven’t yet found a “smoking gun.” Rath said the problem has been narrowed down to the eastern side of the lake. The groups will meet again this week to decide next steps for the fall, he said.
Meanwhile, “This drains to the lake” markers have been placed at storm water drains by LGA to educate people using the lake that they shouldn’t put garbage or diapers down the drains.
Photo: New markers to educate lake users, courtesy of Lake George Association.