Decentralized Wastewater Demonstration Project

Project overview: The Orange County Water Authority (OCWA) conducted this project to demonstrate practices and technologies capable of reducing phosphorus pollution from septic systems while utilizing technologies that minimize electricity consumption in the New York portion of the Greenwood Lake Watershed (study area). The end goal of the project was to demonstrate reliable, low-energy wastewater technologies that can help improve water quality through relatively affordable options that can be used more widely in lake communities with similar issues (shallow soil and/or close proximity to a waterbody) and more broadly. The project was funded by the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) with a grant obtained through Senator Charles Schumer's office, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), and the OCWA. The Village of Greenwood Lake, Town of Warwick and the County Planning Department have provided valuable information and in-kind support throughout the eight-year project. The systems installed will provide a real-world demonstration of several management options that may be part of a sustainable wastewater strategy for the community, and a plan to provide guidance for local leaders and residents about next steps for implementation of system upgrades and other management steps. The final report including all the findings and recommendations are here:

Household Detergent and Nutrient Runoff LawW banning the sale of detergents and fertilizers containing phosporus in New York State. View the article on the NYS DEC website if you would like to learn more about this law and how it will improve water quality in New York, more specifically Greenwood Lake, by reducing phosphorus runoff into waterbodies. It will also reduce costs to local governments and private entities required to remove excess phosphorus from stormwater and wastewater, and will expand recreational uses of the state's waters.

Sewerage Study

In 1991, Orange County completed a County Comprehensive Sewerage Study, which was intentend to give the County a framework from which actions could be taken to address the then current and projected sewage management needs. The Study looks at many potential alternatives for County-wide sewage management since it was recognized from the beginning that there is no single solution to the widely diverse needs of County residents. The attached documents are the complete study.