Posts Tagged ‘water line’

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

PFAS in ProcellaCOR?

Eurasian watermilfoil

Minnesota’s PFAS report

A Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s report on pesticides gained unexpected traction in the Adirondack Park in recent weeks after opponents of a plan to use herbicide in Lake George figured out the report identified the herbicide’s active ingredient as PFAS.

A large and diverse group of chemicals, PFAS is an abbreviation for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances. Also known as “forever chemicals,” some types have been found to cause harm to human health or the environment.

Minnesota in 2023 passed a new set of laws limiting PFAS in cleaning supplies, pesticides and other consumer products, adopting a definition of PFAS broader than any other governmental body.

» Continue Reading.

Wednesday, June 5, 2024

A more appealing Adirondacks

exhibit with Earth iamge

Talking climate education

In May, the Wild Center and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) hosted a workshop for climate educators around the country. Representatives from K-12 schools, universities, museums, nonprofits and other institutions who use NOAA data visualizations and grants met for three days at the center in Tupper Lake.

Louisa Koch, who has served as NOAA’s director of education since 2006, and I sat down on the Wild Center’s patio for an interview about climate change education, the Adirondacks and the challenges of balancing conservation and renewable energy development.

Koch, who remembered visiting the Adirondacks as a student at Middlebury, discussed what she sees as declining climate denial and the tricky tradeoffs of developing renewable energy and conservation.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, May 30, 2024

New road salt reduction funding

man next to a brine sprayer

DEC opens funding for road salt reduction

Communities interested in reducing their road salt use will now have a new source of state funding to draw on.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation included new grants in its core funding programs that aim to support municipalities on their path to minimizing their road salt use.

The grants — through the state’s major water quality improvement program and a pollution control planning program — mark a step toward carrying out the recommendations in last year’s Adirondack Road Salt Reduction Task Force report.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Lake Champlain cable slated for install

Lake Champlain as seen from Point Au Roche State Park in May

Cable installation nears start in Lake Champlain

over two years ago, we reported a story on a massive and complex project to pipe hydropower from Quebec to New York City.

Why was the Adirondack Explorer interested in the story? Because that energy will make its way to the city via a transmission line under Lake Champlain and underground through a sliver of the park’s southeastern corner.

The transmission project, more than a decade in the making, offered an interesting look at the tricky trade-offs of the renewable energy transition. The power will come from Hydro-Quebec’s sprawling portfolio of dams and reservoirs, many of which left a legacy of mistreatment and displacement of Indigenous communities. But no new dams will be built to fuel New York, and energy economists argue it’s a smart way to balance intermittent solar and wind energy sources.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, May 16, 2024

APA hearings?

The marina site on Fish Creek Ponds

Groups to APA: Hold a hearing

Five groups — Protect the Adirondacks, the Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter, Adirondack Wild, Adirondack Council, and the Upper Saranac Foundation — on Monday outlined a shared argument making the case for a rare Adirondack bird: An evidentiary hearing. The groups’ stance: The Adirondack Park Agency board should refer a proposed marina expansion on its agenda this week to a rare evidentiary hearing.

The group’s called the proposed marina expansion at Fish Creek Ponds a “radical departure” from the former Hickok’s boat livery that operated at the site for decades.

“As proposed, the marina is likely to have significant adverse impacts on existing aquatic uses, public safety, wetland and wildlife resources, water quality and neighboring private landowners and Public Forest Preserve,” the groups wrote in a statement issued Monday.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, May 9, 2024

A dam project turns 100

The E.J. West powerhouse

Taming wild rivers

One hundred years ago today, a relatively new state agency voted to impound the Sacandaga River to “regulate” river flows downstream of the Adirondack Park. The Hudson River Regulating District formed in 1919 in the wake of damaging floods along the Hudson River. One of its early tasks: approving a measure ordering construction of the Conklingville Dam.

Construction of the dam began in 1927 and completed in March 1930, creating the state’s largest reservoir (which impacted numerous communities and properties) and controlling the volume of water flowing from the Sacandaga River downstream to the Hudson and points south.

» Continue Reading.

Friday, May 3, 2024

New home, name for Ausable River Association

Woman stands on a piece of land

Ausable River Association plans move

The Ausable River Association celebrates its 25th anniversary this year and is taking steps to ensure its ambitions as a park-wide presence in the next 25 years.

The nonprofit is seeking to change its name this year to the Ausable Freshwater Center and in March submitted plans with the Adirondack Park Agency to build an office and education center of a 9-acre parcel along 1,000 feet of the river’s East Branch.

In 2021, donors gifted AsRA the property on John Fountain Road in Jay to bolster the group’s educational work.

Now, AsRA is looking for APA approval to construct a new office space and educational pavilion on the property, dubbed the Ausable Preserve.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, April 25, 2024

Marina application complete

The marina site on Fish Creek Ponds photographed June 7, 2022.

Fish Creek Ponds marina application complete

An application to upgrade and expand the old Hickok’s Boat Livery on Fish Creek Ponds is complete with the Adirondack Park Agency and open for public comment until Thursday.

USL Marina, the same development team that expanded Saranac Lake Marina on Lower Saranac Lake, is looking to install a new floating deck with 92 boat slips to rent.

The site is just around the corner from the state-owned Fish Creek Pond Campground and has close access to Upper Saranac Lake through a channel.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, April 18, 2024

To the bank

wastewater treatment plant operator

Money update, auditor’s take

Lawmakers in Albany appear close to finalizing the state’s $237 billion budget. Gov. Kathy Hochul announced an agreement last night (April 15) — even as some lawmakers said they were surprised by the news. Policy reporter Gwen Craig in her newsletter noted the agreement included reinstating annual water infrastructure spending to $500 million, after Hochul had proposed slashing the annual investment in drinking water and wastewater funding to $250 million.

» Continue Reading.

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Our guideboat heritage


A man works at a museum

Digitizing a boat collection

Adirondack Experience museum in Blue Mountain Lake maintains one of the most expansive and important collections of Adirondack guideboats anywhere.

It is working to digitize that collection through a process of creating 3-D models called photogrammetry. The models will enable anyone to access more details about the boats and enable researchers to examine how the boats evolved over time. How did boats differ from the Long Lake to Saranac Lake region? The 3-D models may reveal hints.

“The guideboat is really a supreme example of lightweight boat construction—of all wooden boat construction, anywhere,” Hallie Bond, who wrote the book on Adirondack boating, told me during a recent tour of the museum.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, April 4, 2024

Sue for the study

Saranac Lakes Chain

Environmental groups and unhappy neighbors in recent years have challenged a pair of proposed marina expansion projects in the Saranac Lakes Chain by accusing the state of failing to uphold a decades-old requirement to study how much use forest preserve lakes can withstand.

The requirement (mandate? obligation? suggestion?) resides in the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan, which controls how the 6-million acre park is managed. The master plan has called on the Department of Environmental Conservation to complete a “comprehensive study of Adirondack lakes and ponds” aimed at determining “each water body’s capacity to withstand various uses, particularly motorized uses, and to maintain and enhance its biological, natural and aesthetic qualities.”

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, March 28, 2024

Go fishing (on April 1)!

A man presents at a meeting before a group of people

Fishing season begins

As the annual trout fishing season begins on April 1, state fisheries managers are seeking public input into a plan that could shape the trout seasons of the future. After a pair of well-attended information sessions on the Department of Environmental Conservation’s emerging new ponded brook trout plan, the agency scheduled a third one to be held virtually on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. Register here.

I went to the one in Warrensburg, where a team of fisheries managers and biologists outlined the plan and answered questions from a crowd full of anglers. They covered a lot of interesting topics – including plans to stock heritage strains more broadly – and detailed a planned increase of waters where baitfish will be restricted.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, March 21, 2024

Lake Champlain clean up

DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos announces the release of a new Lake Champlain watershed plan at Ausable Point Campground on Monday.

Plans for Lake Champlain

A new state plan outlines priority projects in the Lake Champlain watershed to help control phosphorus pollution into the nation’s 13th-largest lake.

After soliciting public feedback last year, the state Department of Environmental Conservation on Monday released the final version of its Lake Champlain Watershed Implementation Plan.

The plan offers the latest assessment of conditions and pollution sources on Lake Champlain and outlines projects that could help reduce phosphorus loading into the lake, a key pollutant that contributes to increasing harmful algae growth and declining water clarity. A 2002 federal pollution control plan set phosphorus targets for both New York and Vermont.

» Continue Reading.

Thursday, March 14, 2024

Brook trout plan

Trout Power volunteer holds a brook trout.

Planning for (lake-dwelling) brook trout

State fisheries managers are seeking input on a plan that will shape their approach to managing lake-dwelling brook trout for the next 15 years. They hosted their first public information session in Old Forge on Saturday and have another one scheduled this weekend in Warrensburg.

After adopting a new trout stream management plan and regulations in 2020, the Department of Environmental Conservation is now working on a similar plan for the unique brook trout that live out their lives in Adirondack ponds and lakes.

» Continue Reading.

Wednesday, March 6, 2024

Herbicide season

Eurasian watermilfoil

Fighting invasive milfoil

The planned use of the herbicide ProcellaCOR in the region’s long fight against invasive Eurasian watermilfoil continues to grow as lake communities across the park seek permission to use the product this spring.

The Adirondack Park Agency board at its meeting next week will be considering a permit application from the Brant Lake Association to use the herbicide to treat its worst milfoil beds later this spring.

John Dunn, the lake association president, told me the goal is that the herbicide can rein in the lake’s worst infestations, leaving sparser areas for dive teams to harvest by hand.

» Continue Reading.

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