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For Release: Tuesday, May 24, 2011

New York Announces Initiative to Keep Lake Ontario Waters Clean

State Requests "No-Discharge" Designation from EPA

Seeking to safeguard water quality and improve recreational opportunities, state officials announced today that they are calling for New York's portion of Lake Ontario to be designated as a "Vessel Waste No-Discharge Zone" by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

A No-Discharge Zone designation means that boaters are banned from discharging treated on-board sewage into the water. Boaters must instead dispose of their sewage at specially designated pump-out stations (PDF) (210 kB).

Arial Photo of Lake Ontario with Pumpout Stations Marked

  1. William's Marine*
  2. Youngstown Yacht Club (CVAP)
  3. NYSOPRHP (CVAP)
  4. Tuscarora Yacht Club (CVAP)
  5. Hedley Boat Company*
  6. Newfane Marina*
  7. Four C's Marina (CVAP)
  8. Eagle Creek Marina (CVAP)
  9. Braddcock Bay Marina*
  10. Rochester Yacht Club *
  11. City of Rochester (CVAP)
  12. RCR Yachts, Inc.*
  13. Riverview Yacht Club*
  14. County of Monroe (CVAP)
  15. Newport Marina, Inc. (CVAP)
  16. Sutter's Marine, Inc. (CVAP)
  17. Bounty Harbor Marina*
  18. Pultneyville Yacht Club (CVAP)
  19. Sodus Bay Yacht Club (CVAP)
  20. Krenzer Marine, Inc. (CVAP)
  21. Arney's Marina, Inc. (CVAP)
  22. Fair Haven State Park*
  23. Anchor Resort & Marina (CVAP)
  24. Bayside Marina (CVAP)
  25. Port of Oswego-West (CVAP)
  26. Port of Oswego- East (CVAP)
  27. Mexico Bay Co. (CVAP)
  28. Wigwam Marina (CVAP)
  29. Seber Shores Marina (CVAP)
  30. Harbor's End, Inc. (CVAP)
  31. Henchen Marina (CVAP)
  32. Harbor View Marina, Inc.(CVAP)
  33. Grunerts Marina (CVAP)
  34. Navy Point Marina (CVAP)
  35. Madison Barracks (CVAP)
  36. Kitto's Marina (CVAP)
  37. Chaumont Club (CVAP)

*Facility was not funded through CVAP, shown on map for informational purposes but not used in pumpout to boat ratios.

Although discharge of untreated wastewater is currently banned, treated waste can deliver pathogens and toxins to local waters, contribute to harmful nutrient loadings and diminish aesthetics of the waters. Waste treated by on-board septic systems often contains chemical additives such as formaldehyde, phenyls and chlorine. These pollutants can harm water quality, pose a risk to people's health, and impair marine life and habitats.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), in collaboration with the state Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC) and the Department of State (DOS), has prepared a petition to the EPA requesting the designation to protect the waters of Lake Ontario.

Since 1976, DEC has designated most of the coastal waters and connecting waterways in New York as Vessel Waste No-Discharge Zones. In 2010, DEC announced that it had set a goal of 2012 to establish No-Discharge Zones for all waterbodies and waterways in the state. The Lake Ontario petition is part of DEC's continuing effort to meet that goal. Approval would extend protection to 326 miles of Great Lakes shoreline from Youngstown in the west, to Cape Vincent in the east.

Upon concurrence by EPA, an opportunity for public comment would be announced later this summer in the Federal Register. When that concludes, EPA will address comments and determine if there are an adequate number of vessel pump-out stations to support the No-Discharge Zone. If EPA concurs, the No-Discharge Zone would be enforced by DEC law enforcement, State Police and local authorities.

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