Department of Environmental Conservation

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Water Quality Management

DEC uses an integrated approach to keep New York's lakes, rivers, and streams clean. The programs outlined below work together to manage sources of water pollution, reduce the amount of specific pollutants, and improve and protect the water quality in targeted waterbodies and watersheds.

Managing Sources of Pollution

Reducing Pollutants

  • Blue-green Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) - information about freshwater blue-green algal blooms, photo gallery of toxic and nontoxic algae, list of lakes and map of lakes with blue-green algae blooms, and information about what DEC is doing about blue-green algae blooms.
  • Drugs (Pharmaceuticals) in New York Waters - information about the impact of improper disposal of drugs and personal care products lakes, rivers and streams and guidance on how to safely dispose of drugs.
  • Mercury - information about what DEC is doing to manage and regulate mercury in the environment and general information about mercury, the Northeast Mercury TMDL and the Pollutant Minimization Program Guide.
  • Nutrients - information about how nutrients impact waterbodies, nutrient water quality standards, nutrient reduction efforts, and DEC's plan to develop nutrient criteria

Protecting Waters & Watersheds

The following funding programs help to keep water clean:

For information about all of DEC's grant programs, visit the Grants Applications web page.

More about Water Quality Management: