Division of Water - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation

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Division of Water

Mark Klotz, Director
Tom Cullen, Assistant Director

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Welcome to the Division of Water webpage! The Division conducts a variety of programs to protect and conserve New York's waters. On this page you will find information about the Division's programs and recent activities.

What's New in the Division of Water?

The Division of Water uses this page to highlight water-related information that we think may interest you. This page is updated weekly and topics are typically posted here for about 30 days. If a topic has a specific end date (such as a public comment period or an event), the description is removed after the end date.

Harmful Algal Bloom Notifications

New waterbodies with harmful algal blooms have been added August 10 to DEC's Harmful Algal Blooms Notifications webpage.

This week, 17 waterbodies were added to the notification list. There are currently 57 waterbodies with blooms on the list.

Know it. Avoid it. Report it.

Because waterbodies may have HABs that have not been reported to DEC, we recommend avoiding contact with floating mats, scum and discolored water.

If you suspect you have seen a HAB, or you, your family, or pet has been in contact with a HAB, please follow the instructions for reporting a bloom to DEC.

2018 N.G. Kaul Memorial Scholarship Award Winners

The Division of Water, in cooperation with the New York Water Environment Association, is pleased to announce the 2018 winners of the N.G. Kaul Memorial Scholarship Awards:

  • The winner of a $3,000 scholarship is Fazena Bacchus, currently enrolled in a master's program in Environmental Engineering at Manhattan College in New York City.

  • In addition, $2,500 merit awards were given to:
    • Vasileia Vogiazi, a doctorate degree candidate in Environmental Science at the University of Cincinnati.
    • Molly Welsh, a doctorate degree candidate in Environmental Science, Water and Wetland Resources at SUNY - College of Environmental Sciences and Forestry in Syracuse.

N.G. Kaul was a highly respected engineer who was the Director of the Division of Water from 1992 to 2002. He died in February, 2004. More information about the memorial scholarship is on the New York Water Environment Association webpage (a link is in the "Links Leaving DEC's Website" section on the right side of this page).

NFWF Chesapeake Bay Funding Available

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), in partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the federal-state Chesapeake Bay Program partnership, is soliciting proposals through the Chesapeake Bay Innovative Nutrient and Sediment Reduction (INSR) Grants and Small Watershed Grants (SWG) programs to restore water quality and habitats of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributary rivers and streams. INSR pre-proposals and SWG full proposals are due by midnight, September 4, 2018 and must be submitted through NFWF's online application. Links to the grant program requests for proposals and the online application are in the "Links Leaving DEC's Webpage" section on the right side of this page.

For more about New York's connection to the Chesapeake Bay and the work of DEC's Chesapeake Bay Watershed Program, visit DEC's Chesapeake Bay Watershed webpage.

Lake Ontario Flood Recovery General Permit Extended

DEC has completed revisions to the Lake Ontario General Permit related to erosion and shoreline damage caused by the historic high-water levels of Lake Ontario during 2017-18, and is extending the permit authority expiration date. The General Permit was revised to include additional typical activities undertaken by shoreline property owners to make necessary repairs and stabilize their properties from high water levels and wind-driven high wave events. The extension allows DEC to accept applications through April 30, 2019, and extends the permit expiration date to September 30, 2019. For more information, view DEC's press release.

Draft Clean Water State Revolving Fund and Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Intended Use Plans

The NYS Environmental Facilities Corporation, DEC and the NYS Department of Health have announced the availability of the Draft Federal Fiscal Year 2019 Intended Use Plans (IUPs) for the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) and the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF). The CWSRF and DWSRF programs are available to municipalities and certain non-municipal entities in New York State to finance water quality and drinking water related projects. The Draft IUPs include lists of projects that could receive financing between October 1, 2018 and September 30, 2019.

For more information, including: how to submit projects not listed in the IUPs; webinar, public meeting and hearing dates; and how to comment, view the July 11 Environmental Notice Bulletin.

Grant Funding Available to Improve Water Quality Through Tree Planting Projects

DEC has announced the first round of statewide competitive grants for the Trees for Tributaries Program, designed to support riparian tree planting projects for communities across the State. Approximately $525,000 in grant funding is available to help plant trees and shrubs along streams to improve wildlife habitat, water quality and storm resiliency. Applications are due by 3:00 PM on September 7, 2018.

Grant Funding Available for Clean Water Infrastructure Projects

Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced that $275 million in grant funding is available to municipalities with infrastructure projects that protect or improve water quality and/or public health. This funding, available through the Water Infrastructure Improvement Act and the Intermunicipal Water Infrastructure Grants program, is part of the Governor's historic $2.5 billion Clean Water Infrastructure Act of 2017.

Grant applications and additional information are available and must be submitted along with any required supporting documentation to: NYSWaterGrants@efc.ny.gov by September 7, 2018. (An offsite link to these grant programs on the Environmental Facilities Corp's webpage is in the "Links Leaving DEC's Website" section on the right side of this page.)

Notice of Draft State Flood Risk Management Guidance

DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos announced the release of two flood-risk management guidance documents for public review: New York State Flood Risk Management Guidance and Guidance for Smart Growth Public Infrastructure Assessment. The documents were developed under the Community Risk and Resiliency Act (CRRA), which requires applicants for some State permits, State funding, and certain facility-siting regulations to consider future physical climate risk due to sea-level rise, storm surge, and flooding. The proposed guidance also addresses mitigating risk due to sea-level rise, storm surge, and flooding in the approval and funding of public infrastructure. For more information, including how to comment and dates of public meetings, view DEC's Environmental Notice Bulletin. Written comments will be accepted through August 20, 2018.

Hudson River Estuary River Access and River Education Grants

Approximately $1,115,000 is now available for River Access and River Education grants through the Hudson River Estuary Program. This competitive grant opportunity will help communities implement priorities outlined in the Hudson River Estuary Action Agenda, specifically to improve access to the tidal waters of the Hudson for fishing, swimming, boating, and wildlife-dependent recreation, and to enhance education about the estuary to make opportunities to learn about the Hudson River Estuary more accessible for a wide range of people.

Applications must be submitted in the NYS Grants Gateway by 3:00 PM on August 22, 2018 (an offsite link to the Grants Gateway is in the "Links Leaving DEC's Website" section on the right side of this page).

Division Webpages

Carpenter Falls
Carpenter Falls

The Division of Water's webpages fall mainly into one of the two following locations:

  • Water Pollution Control - Information, guidance material and forms about the programs the Division of Water administers to control sources of water pollution.
  • Lands and Waters - Water resource information is divided into the following categories:
    • Watersheds, Lakes Rivers: Information on NYS watersheds and other water bodies
    • Oceans & Estuaries: NYS marine and estuary resource information
    • Groundwater: Aquifer and groundwater information & resources
    • Dam Safety, Coastal & Flood Protection: Program information related to flood protection, floodplain development, dam safety, and coastal management
    • Water Supply & Reclamation: Information on protecting New York's public water supplies and drought information

Division's Mission

The Mission of the Division of Water is to protect and conserve the water resources of New York State. This mission is accomplished through a wide range of programs and activities. Some of these are statewide in their scope and apply to all parts of the state. Other efforts are targeted to address water quality and quantity issues in specific regions of the state, focusing on waterbodies or watersheds where these issues are of particular concern. Still other programs target specific contaminants (e.g., mercury) or sources (e.g., stormwater runoff) or impacts (e.g., acid rain) of pollution.

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