13 January, 2009

Beach Closure meeting

There is a beach closure meeting scheduled in Stamford on January 22, 2009. I do not have the agenda nor the location, but it appears to be a governmental meeting between the USEPA and the city with the state looking on. The Health Department has been invited, will Josh Polur, the sanitarian who does all the leg work on the beaches and Joe Kuntz, the lab person who has done mountains of research and has not only been instrumental in the setting the beach closure policy for the city, but also the state and influence the USGS and the USEPA on their current programs be there???? Stay tuned for more info.


  1. I will not be attending -still can not get myself together enough to sit for 2 1/2 hours. My boss has been apprised of the meeting and will be there with my knowledge. I do not think Josh will be there, but his boss will be. The previously stated goal of the USEPA in these meetings is to stop beach closures by getting storm water treated. I stand against that for many, many reason, most of which have been expressed in my environmental blog. The USEPA does not have any funds to offer, so I really do not think much will come of this meeting.

  2. A bit of info for you from Jon Dineen, the gentleman at the state who helps with the beach program data

    "Regarding yesterday's meeting in Stamford with US EPA: US EPA Region is on the record as interested in reducing beach closings while at the time the agency values the use of preemptive closures due to raifall to protect public health. Most of the meeting focused on storm water issues - what's in storm water, where it comes from and where it appears in Long Island Sound. Stamford understands full well that storm water can contain pollutants like antifreeze, dog feces, bird (goose) feces, racoon feces, and the occsaional septic tank pump out discharge. No body wants to swim in this stuff. Cleaning up storm water to render it swimmable is probably out of reach but it is understood that such an effort would involve things like public eduction to help control the disposal of dog feces into storm drains, stencilling storm drains, regular storm drain sump and catch basin cleanout, identifying illicit cross connections and looking for solutions to the goose problem. End-of-pipe solutions probably won't work, while in-pipe sedimentation trapping and disinfection are very costly.

    EPA presented two handouts that list sources of funding from CT DEP and LISS that migtht be applied for and that could possibly help with storm water issues. EPA has offered some expertise from its Chelmsford Lab to help track the origins and fate of the pollutants that can be found in storm water/river discharge that can impact Stamford beaches.

    EPA plans to put together a draft action plan and talk further with Stamford."

    Hope this helps

  3. Matthew, the only things that really came out of this meeting is accolades for the lab guy who tests and keep records. I guess they aren't used to things being kept so well. They really want Stamford to address a multitude of problems and are sending information every so often on grants available. However in their own report, they site Greenwich, Norwalk and New York as culprits in some of our beach closures. They then say money is not available to correct the problems. Nice isn't it?