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Department of Chemistry
Paid Internships With Manhasset Bay
Water Quality Data Entry and Analysis Project-1/11/05
The Manhasset Bay Protection Committee is an inter-municipal group composed of Nassau County, the Town of North Hempstead, and the incorporated villages surrounding Manhasset Bay. Funding is administered through the Town of North Hempstead.
Nassau County, three pollution control districts, the Interstate Environmental Commission, and MBPC/TNH conduct water quality testing at various locations in Manhasset Bay. In most years, Nassau County collected samples from six outfalls once a week between April and September. The samples were then tested for total and fecal coliform. Beginning in 2002, testing for enterococci was added. In 2004, MBPC/TNH collected samples from three open water locations once a week between April and October. The samples were then tested for dissolved oxygen, total and fecal coliform, enterococci, and nitrates. In 2005, MBPC/TNH anticipate adding three additional open water locations. The testing patterns of the water pollution control districts and IEC have not yet been ascertained.
The committee has received a grant from the NYS Dept. of State/Coastal Resources to computerize this data and to begin to analyze it. The goal of this analysis to determine a clear baseline of information to which future data can be compared. The committee's interest is in understanding short- and long-term trends in the general health of the bay. It should be noted that the purpose of the testing conducted by Nassau County and the water pollution control districts is to monitor public health. The purpose of the testing conducted by MBPC/TNH is to monitor the general health of the bay.
The consultant will receive the last nine years of county data and one year of MBPC/TNH data. The consultant will contact the three water pollution control districts to obtain up to nine years of their data. Data collected for the 2005 season will also be incorporated into the study when it becomes available.
The consultant will enter this information into Excel or an Excel compatible format. The consultant will then produce a report in Microsoft Word that presents a clear baseline of information to which future data can be compared. The report will include confidence intervals relative to the general health of the bay based on the number and type of locations sampled and the parameters examined. The consultant will then suggest monitoring strategies based on high, moderate, and low confidence intervals. Each of these strategies will include estimate of the associated costs of collection, laboratory testing, and data analysis.
This information will help decision makers plan future research based on the costs they are willing to assume relative to the certainty of findings. It may also be possible to use this information to quantify to a given level of statistical power what progress is being made toward state water quality goals.
Rain Event Testing Project (Stannards Brook, Port Washington) 1/11/05
The Manhasset Bay Protection Committee is an inter-municipal group composed of Nassau County, the Town of North Hempstead, and the incorporated villages surrounding Manhasset Bay. Funding is administered through the Town of
MBPC has received a grant from the NYS Dept. of State/Coastal Resources to examine water quality in Stannards Brook,
a small stream that empties into Manhasset Bay, during three rain events (defined as 0.5 inches of rain or more).
In 2003 and 2004, Nassau County conducted water quality testing in Stannards Brook and 16 other streams throughout
the county during periods of dry weather. The county anticipates continuing this work in 2005. The primary focus of the county project is to detect dry weather evidence of illicit discharge and/or nonpoint source pollution. To date, little to no evidence of these contaminants has been found in Stannards Brook.
The MBPC project will augment the county's work by examining the effect of storm water runoff in Stannards Brook during and shortly after the first gutter flush of a rain event. The goal of the MBPC project is to detect wet weather evidence of illicit discharge and/or nonpoint pollution, if any; to identify management practices or improvements that
may minimize the impact of these contaminants; and to recommend possible avenues for future research.
Between April 1 and December 21, 2005, the consultant will collect a total of at least six samples of water from the same specified location in Stannards Brook during three separate rain events. Two samples will be collected per event: one during first gutter flush, when water is beginning to spill from the gutter into the stream, and one approximately 1- to 2-hours after first gutter flush, when rain is still falling but the first flush of water has dissipated. One pair of samples will
be obtained during the spring, one during the summer, and one during the fall. It may be necessary to collect initial samples on more than one rainy day per season to increase the likelihood that two same- day samples will be collected.
The consultant will perform laboratory testing for the same volatile organic compounds (VOCs), nutrients, and pathogens used in the county study using the same detection levels (see pages 9 & 10 of the county's 2004 dry weather draft report, attached).
The consultant will computerize this data in Excel or an Excel-compatible format and produce a report in Microsoft Word that examines the rain-event findings and compares them with the county's dry-weather findings for 2003 through 2005, which will be provided by the county. The report will indicate what the data show about the water quality in Stannards Brook, suggest management practices that might mitigate any contaminants that may be found; and outline the most potentially productive avenues for future research. Tables/graphs/illustrations will be included as appropriate.