Study Area Scope Data Sources and Methods

Study Area. The Hudson River basin can be divided geographically into four subbasins: (1) upper Hudson River basin, extending from its source at Lake Tear of the Clouds to the Federal dam at Troy, New York; (2) Mohawk River basin; (3) middle Hudson River basin, from the Federal dam at Troy, New York to the Bronx-Westchester County boundary; and (4) lower Hudson in the New York-New Jersey metropolitan region from the Bronx-Westchester County line to the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. This chapter focuses on the middle Hudson and lower Hudson River basins (Fig. 23.1). The watersheds of the middle Hudson basin include most of the area of Albany, Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, Orange, Putnam, Rensselaer, Rockland, Ulster, and Westchester counties. The lower Hudson (metropolitan New York-New Jersey region) basin includes portions of the five boroughs of NewYork City (Queens, Bronx, Brooklyn, Staten Island, and Manhattan) and Bergen, Passaic, Essex, Morris,

Figure 23.1. Map of the middle and lower Hudson River.

Hudson and Union counties in New Jersey. For this study, the lower Hudson estuary includes the Hudson River from the Bronx-Westchester County line to the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, and includes the Harlem River, the East River to Throgs Neck, and the Kill van Kull.

Scope of study. Pollutants are discharged to the Hudson River from municipal and industrial wastewater treatment plants (WTP), combined sewer overflows (CSO), urban storm water, tributaries, and nonpoint sources including dry and wet atmospheric deposition and land runoff. In this chapter, we present trends in municipal wastewater pollutant loads discharged directly or indirectly to the middle Hudson and lower Hudson basins. Historical data have been compiled from 1900-2000 to show trends in population served by different categories of treatment plants, wastewater flow and effluent loading rates of 5-day biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5), totalsus-pended solids (TSS), total nitrogen (TN) and total phosphorus (TP). Historical pollutant-loading and water quality data are presented to document the problem causedby ignoring the waste disposal side of the urban water cycle during the first half of the twentieth century and the effectiveness of state and federal regulations and WTP construction subsidies enacted in the 1970s to improve waste disposal practices. Finally, contemporary WTP loads are put in the context of a total point and nonpoint source budget for the 1990s.

Data sources. The data sources, methodology, and assumptions used to estimate wastewater flow and pollutant loads for the middle and lower Hudson basins are documentedinJohnson (1994), Johnson and Hetling (1995) and Hetling et al. (2003).

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