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2016 Beach Watch: Week 5 Results

August 4th, 2016 | Posted by Kate

Save The River Reports on Week 5 of Beach Watch Program

Save The River’s Beach Watch Program is in the process of monitoring popular summer swimming locations on the River from July 5th through August 29th on a weekly basis.  Save The River reports all samples collected on August 1, 2016 passed.

For the 2016 sampling season Save The River volunteers are collecting water quality samples at six swimming areas along the River: Wilson’s Beach in Cape Vincent, Potter’s Beach on Grindstone Island, Frink Dock in Clayton, Round Island in Clayton, Lake of the Isles on Wellesley Island, and Scenic View Park in Alexandria Bay. Save The River’s unique program provides a glimpse of the water quality at popular swimming areas during the peak recreational swimming season.

Location Pass/Fail Parts per 100mL
Frink Park PASS <1.0
Lake of the Isles PASS 2.0
Potter’s Beach PASS 1.0
Round Island PASS 4.1
Scenic View Beach PASS 2.0
Wilson’s Beach 3 ft PASS 2.0
Wilson’s Beach 6ft PASS 2.0

Results are expressed in numbers of bacteria colonies found in 100 milliliter (mL) sample of swimming water.  The NY State Department of Health has set a swimming quality limit of 235 colonies of E. coli bacteria per 100 mL of water.

As in previous years, Save The River will be testing for E. coli bacteria in all of its swimming locations and will compare water quality results with state and federal regulations. Save The River will make the results available to the public each week with a pass/fail system at the organization’s office, online and by following Save The River on Facebook and Twitter. Results will also be posted on www.swimguide.org and in the T.I. Sun.

To sign up for weekly Beach Watch updates or for more information about the program please contact the Save The River office at (315)-686-2010 or visit www.savetheriver.org.

 

Photo Caption: Save The River volunteer, Maria Purcell, collects a water sample from Potter’s Beach located on Grindstone Island, on August 1, 2016. Photo Credit: Mark Prucell

Save The River volunteer, Maria Purcell, collects a water sample from Potter’s Beach located on Grindstone Island, on August 1, 2016.
Photo Credit: Mark Prucell

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2016 Beach Watch: Week 4 Results

July 28th, 2016 | Posted by Kate

Save The River Reports on Week 4 of Beach Watch Program

Save The River’s Beach Watch Program is in the process of monitoring popular summer swimming locations on the River from July 5th through August 29th on a weekly basis.  Save The River reports all samples collected on July 25, 2016 passed.

For the 2016 sampling season Save The River volunteers are collecting water quality samples at six swimming areas along the River: Wilson’s Beach in Cape Vincent, Potter’s Beach on Grindstone Island, Frink Dock in Clayton, Round Island in Clayton, Lake of the Isles on Wellesley Island, and Scenic View Park in Alexandria Bay. Save The River’s unique program provides a glimpse of the water quality at popular swimming areas during the peak recreational swimming season.

Location Pass/Fail Parts per 100mL
Frink Park PASS <1.0
Lake of the Isles PASS <1.0
Potter’s Beach PASS 14.6
Round Island NO SAMPLE NO SAMPLE
Scenic View Beach PASS 7.4
Wilson’s Beach 3 ft PASS 1.0
Wilson’s Beach 6ft PASS 1.0

 

Results are expressed in numbers of bacteria colonies found in 100 milliliter (mL) sample of swimming water.  The NY State Department of Health has set a swimming quality limit of 235 colonies of E. coli bacteria per 100 mL of water.

As in previous years, Save The River will be testing for E. coli bacteria in all of its swimming locations and will compare water quality results with state and federal regulations. Save The River will make the results available to the public each week with a pass/fail system at the organization’s office, online and by following Save The River on Facebook and Twitter. Results will also be posted on www.swimguide.org and in the T.I. Sun.

To sign up for weekly Beach Watch updates or for more information about the program please contact the Save The River office at (315)-686-2010 or visit www.savetheriver.org.

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2016 Beach Watch: Week 3 Results

July 21st, 2016 | Posted by Kate

Save The River Reports on Week 3 of Beach Watch Program

Save The River’s Beach Watch Program is in the process of monitoring popular summer swimming locations on the River from July 5th through August 29th on a weekly basis.  Save The River reports all the samples collected passed on July 18, 2016.

For the 2016 sampling season Save The River volunteers are collecting water quality samples at six swimming areas along the River: Wilson’s Beach in Cape Vincent, Potter’s Beach on Grindstone Island, Frink Dock in Clayton, Round Island in Clayton, Lake of the Isles on Wellesley Island, and Scenic View Park in Alexandria Bay. Save The River’s unique program provides a glimpse of the water quality at popular swimming areas during the peak recreational swimming season.

Location Pass/Fail Parts per 100mL
Frink Park PASS <1.0
Lake of the Isles PASS 1.0
Potter’s Beach PASS 98.7
Round Island PASS 2.0
Scenic View Beach PASS 7.3
Wilson’s Beach 3 ft PASS 16.0
Wilson’s Beach 6ft PASS 16.1

Results are expressed in numbers of bacteria colonies found in 100 milliliter (mL) sample of swimming water.  The NY State Department of Health has set a swimming quality limit of 235 colonies of E. coli bacteria per 100 mL of water.

As in previous years, Save The River will be testing for E. coli bacteria in all of its swimming locations and will compare water quality results with state and federal regulations. Save The River will make the results available to the public each week with a pass/fail system at the organization’s office, online and by following Save The River on Facebook and Twitter. Results will also be posted on www.swimguide.org and in the T.I. Sun.

To sign up for weekly Beach Watch updates or for more information about the program please contact the Save The River office at (315)-686-2010 or visit www.savetheriver.org.

 Save The River’s volunteers, Jean Daly and Ben Giardina, collect a water sample from Lake of the Isles near Wellesley Island. Photo Credit: Ron Daly

Save The River’s volunteers, Jean Daly and Ben Giardina, collect a water sample from Lake of the Isles near Wellesley Island. Photo Credit: Ron Daly

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2016 Beach Watch: Week 2 Results

July 14th, 2016 | Posted by Kate

Save The River Reports on Week 2 of Beach Watch Program

Save The River’s Beach Watch Program is in the process of monitoring popular summer swimming locations on the River from July 5th through August 29th on a weekly basis.  Save The River reports all samples collected on July 11, 2016 passed.

For the 2016 sampling season Save The River volunteers are collecting water quality samples at six swimming areas along the River: Wilson’s Beach in Cape Vincent, Potter’s Beach on Grindstone Island, Frink Dock in Clayton, Round Island in Clayton, Lake of the Isles on Wellesley Island, and Scenic View Park in Alexandria Bay. Save The River’s unique program provides a glimpse of the water quality at popular swimming areas during the peak recreational swimming season.

Location Pass/Fail Parts per 100mL
Frink Park PASS 1.0
Lake of the Isles PASS 1.0
Potter’s Beach PASS <1.0
Round Island NO SAMPLE NO SAMPLE
Scenic View Beach PASS 3.1
Wilson’s Beach 3 ft PASS 3.1
Wilson’s Beach 6ft PASS 4.1

Results are expressed in numbers of bacteria colonies found in a one hundred milliliter (mL) sample of swimming water.  The NY state Department of Health has set a swimming water quality limit of 235 colonies of E. coli bacteria per 100 milliliters of water.

As in previous years, Save The River will be testing for E. coli bacteria in all of its swimming locations and will compare water quality results with state and federal regulations. Save The River will make the results available to the public each week with a pass/fail system at the organization’s office, online and by following Save The River on Facebook and Twitter. Results will also be posted on www.swimguide.org and in the T.I. Sun.

To sign up for weekly Beach Watch updates or for more information about the program please contact the Save The River office at (315)-686-2010 or visit www.savetheriver.org.

 

Potter's Beach on Grindstone Island is one of the area's popular swimming locations where samples are collected each week.  Photo Credit: Maria Purcell

Potter’s Beach on Grindstone Island is one of the area’s popular swimming locations where samples are collected each week. Photo Credit: Maria Purcell.

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2016 Beach Watch Week 1 Results

July 8th, 2016 | Posted by Kate

Save The River Reports on Week 1 of Beach Watch Program

Save The River’s Beach Watch Program is in the process of monitoring popular summer swimming locations on the River from July 5th through August 29th on a daily basis.  Save The River reports all samples passed in Week 1.

For the 2016 sampling season Save The River volunteers are collecting water quality samples at six swimming areas along the River: Wilson’s Beach in Cape Vincent, Potter’s Beach on Grindstone Island, Frink Dock in Clayton, Round Island in Clayton, Lake of the Isles near Wellesley Island, and Scenic View Park in Alexandria Bay. Save The River’s unique program provides a glimpse of the water quality at popular swimming areas during the peak recreational swimming season.

Location

Pass/Fail

Parts per 100mL

Frink Park

PASS

<1.0

Lake of the Isles

PASS

<1.0

Potter’s Beach

PASS

<1.0

Round Island

PASS

<1.0

Scenic View Beach

PASS

5.2

Wilson’s Beach 3 ft

NO SAMPLE

Wilson’s Beach 6ft

NO SAMPLE

Results are expressed in numbers of baterica colonies found in a one hundred millileter (mL) sample of swimming water.  The NY State Department of Health has set a swimming water quality limit of 235 colonies of E. coli bacteria per 100 mL of water.

As in previous years, Save The River will be testing for E. coli bacteria in all of its swimming locations and will compare water quality results with state and federal regulations. Save The River will make the results available to the public each week with a pass/fail system at the organization’s office, online and by following Save The River on Facebook and Twitter. Results will also be posted on www.swimguide.org and in the T.I. Sun.

To sign up for weekly Beach Watch updates or for more information about the program please contact the Save The River office at (315)-686-2010 or visit www.savetheriver.org.


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Water Quality to be Tested at Popular Swimming Areas

June 27th, 2016 | Posted by Kate

Save The River’s annual summer Beach Watch Program will begin July 5th and will run through August 29th.  The program will provide weekly snapshots of water quality at popular swimming areas during the peak recreational swimming season.  Sites to be tested include Wilson’s Beach in Cape Vincent, Potter’s Beach on Grindstone Island, Frink Dock in Clayton, Round Island in Clayton, Lake of the Isles on Wellesley Island, and Scenic View Park in Alexandria Bay.


The samples collected each week are tested for Escherichia coli, (E. coli). E. coli is a fast spreading bacteria and can respond to environmental signals quickly in order to thrive in the water. Once tested, the bacteria levels in each sample are then compared to state and federal beach water quality standards, which are set at 235 colonies per 100 ml of water for the 2016 season. High levels of E. coli bacteria can cause health problems (including gastrointestinal illness), and can be dangerous to the very old, the very young, as well as those with a compromised immune system.


In 2015, all sites tested passed the weekly safety standard for E. coli levels, however, in previous years there have been occasional incidences of high bacteria levels, especially late in the summer season when water temperatures are at their highest. As a result, Save The River has continued to closely monitor water quality according to New York State Department of Health guidelines.


Beach Watch results are posted at the Save The River office and on the Save The River website, www.savetheriver.org every Thursday.  The results can also be found on the Save The River Facebook page, in The Thousands Islands Sun, online at theswimguide.org or on the SwimGuide app available on the App Store and Google Play.

Save The River summer intern Heidi Pearson conducts a pre-season assessment at Wilson's Beach.

Save The River summer intern Heidi Pearson conducts a pre-season assessment at Wilson's Beach.

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Proceed with Caution

April 27th, 2016 | Posted by Lee

April Dangers.

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Once the wind (& the snow) die down and the early season beauty of the River is calling us to be on it again, remember there are leftovers from winter to be aware of and avoid.

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Water Levels to Fluctuate on River During Operation to Recover Sunken Tug – Updated

August 4th, 2015 | Posted by Lee
from the IJC, “Water level impacts of the flow fluctuations will be most evident on the St. Lawrence River.  The decreased outflows expected during the salvage operations will result in water levels on Lake St. Lawrence rising during the day, . . . However, strong winds, especially those with a westerly component, may result in temporary high levels in excess of this threshold [242.35′].  When outflows are ramped back up each night, levels on Lake St. Lawrence will temporarily decrease by as much as 80 cm (31.5 in).”
The Board will allow outflows to be decreased during daylight working hours to reduce current velocities and the risk of hazardous conditions in the vicinity of the remaining sunken vessel. . . . The Board has agreed to allow 14-hour long daytime outflow reductions for up to seven days to facilitate the remaining salvage operations. Starting on Tuesday, 4 August, outflows will be decreased . . . each day by 6 am, and ramped back up . . . each night starting at 8 pm.
– See more at: http://www.ijc.org/en_/islrbc/news?news_id=499&myID=1#sthash.dboz50gb.dpuf

from the IJC, “Water level impacts of the flow fluctuations will be most evident on the St. Lawrence River [& principally on Lake St. Lawrence].  The decreased outflows expected during the salvage operations will result in water levels on Lake St. Lawrence rising during the day, . . . However, strong winds, especially those with a westerly component, may result in temporary high levels in excess of this threshold [242.35′].  When outflows are ramped back up each night, levels on Lake St. Lawrence will temporarily decrease by as much as 80 cm (31.5 in).”

The Board will allow outflows to be decreased during daylight working hours to reduce current velocities and the risk of hazardous conditions in the vicinity of the remaining sunken vessel. . . . The Board has agreed to allow 14-hour long daytime outflow reductions for up to seven days to facilitate the remaining salvage operations. Starting on Tuesday, 4 August, outflows will be decreased . . . each day by 6 am, and ramped back up . . . each night starting at 8 pm.

“The net effect of the flow variations will also cause as much as 3 cm (1.2 in) of water to be temporarily stored on Lake Ontario [& the River in the 1000 Islands region] (relative to Plan 1958-D).  This water will then be removed from Lake Ontario as quickly as possible following the removal of the remaining tug.  The Board currently anticipates being able to complete this process within a period of between five to eight weeks.

– See more at: Board adjusting outflows to assist salvage efforts

– For a look back at the original story: Cornwall Seaway News

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Save The River Reports on Week 1 of Beach Watch Program

July 9th, 2015 | Posted by admin

Clayton, NY (July 9, 2015) – Save The River’s Beach Watch Program is in the process of monitoring popular summer swimming locations on the River from July 6th through August 31st Save The River reports all samples passed in Week 1.

For the 2015 sampling season Save The River volunteers are collecting water quality samples at six swimming areas along the River: Wilson Beach in Cape Vincent, Potter’s Beach on Grindstone Island, Frink Dock in Clayton, Round Island in Clayton, Lake of the Isles on Wellesley Island, and Scenic View Park in Alexandria Bay. Save The River’s unique program provides a glimpse of the water quality at popular swimming areas during the peak recreational swimming season. Sampling dates for this year are July 6, July 13, July 20, July 27, August 3, August 10, August 17, August 24, and August 31.

As in previous years, Save The River will be testing for e. coli bacteria in all of our swimming locations and will compare water quality results with state and federal regulations. Save The River The results will be made available to the public each week with a pass/ fail system that is available at the Save the River offices, website and by following Save The River on Facebook and Twitter. Results will also be posted on www.swimguide.org and in the T.I. Sun.

For more information please contact the Save The River office at (315)-686-2010 or visit www.savetheriver.org.

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Understanding Water Levels – Summer 2015

June 29th, 2015 | Posted by admin

As the summer season gets into full swing here on the River, there has been a lot of discussion particularly in the Thousand Islands area about the water levels on the St Lawrence. Here are some answers to the questions that you and your neighbors may have about conditions on the River this year.

Is the water level in the Thousand Islands area of the River low this year?

In the big picture, the water levels in the Thousand Islands stretch of the River are not actually low right now. While they are lower than last year, the current water levels are about three inches above the long-term average for the end of June.

Why are water levels lower than last year?

The water in the St Lawrence is lower than last year because the supply of water flowing into the river has been lower. You have to appreciate that the St Lawrence is part of a complex system. When looking at the water it contains, you need to look at where it comes from, whether it is the outflow from Lakes Ontario and Erie, this winter’s snowfall, or the recent rainfall and runoff.

While we did have a very cold winter, we didn’t actually get a lot of snow. Add to this our very dry spring and the result is lower water levels.  The water levels were 4-6 inches below average in May, as there was less rain than usual across much of the Great Lakes basin.  Precipitation in June has been higher and levels are now coming up faster than normal.

It’s also important to understand that while we on the River tend to like our water levels to be on the higher side, the health of the St. Lawrence depends on having a variety of levels including some infrequent low levels. Occasional low levels are essential to the health of the fish, the wildlife and the wetlands of the St. Lawrence River. There’s just no way around it. If we want a healthy river, we have to learn to live with a range of levels.

Was water let out for ships and commercial navigation? Is that why the water’s low?

While extra water was discharged to raise water levels for downstream shipping interests earlier in the year, it’s important to know that it is not affecting our current water level. Giving 3 inches of water to the Port of Montreal only brings down the water levels in the Thousand Islands and Lake Ontario by less than a third of an inch. Also, while there were a few of these short-term discharges for shippers early in the year, that water was restored within days of being released.

In other words, any and all discharges for commercial navigation were restored shortly after they occurred, and none of them caused a drop of more than a third of an inch in our water levels here on the River. Currently, these discharges are having no impact on our water levels.

What is Plan 2014 and has it been implemented?

Plan 2014 is the more natural plan for setting water levels that our communities have been pushing for to replace the outdated plan that is now more than 50 years old. Save The River strongly supports Plan 2014 as it will improve the overall health of the River and restore critical wetland habitat, provide greater economic opportunities for our tourism-based economy. Plan 2014 has been recommended for approval to the federal governments in the U.S. and Canada, however it has not yet been implemented.

Would Plan 2014 mean a longer boating season?

Most of the time yes, but not always. Overall, it’s clear that Plan 2014 would extend the boating season. Over the last hundred years, the boating season under Plan 2014 would have been 23 weeks or longer in 51 out of every 100 years. However, in a very few years, likely 6 or fewer years per century, Plan 2014 would allow the levels to drop when nature wants them to. These very occasional low summer levels are very important for the health of the River. During these years, marinas and docks constructed during periods of high water levels may experience difficulties. A comprehensive survey of recreational boating conducted by Cornell University says only a very small proportion of the marinas and docks would be affected.

Would the water be higher if we had Plan 2014?

Most years, yes. This year? No. This year, if Plan 2014 were in place, the level would be almost exactly the same as our current level. But remember, because of the way it allows for more natural water levels, Plan 2014 would restore more than 60,000 acres of wetlands, and there would be additional Northern Pike, terns and other species for our children and grandchildren to catch, watch and enjoy. In short, water levels will always fluctuate but until we get approval of Plan 2014, they will not do so in a way that benefits the River.

For more information on Plan 2014 call our office 315-686-2010 or go to http://www.savetheriver.org/index.cfm?page=app.programsLevels

For more information on current water levels go to the Facebook page of the International St. Lawrence River Board of Control: https://www.facebook.com/ISLRBC?fref=ts

Click here to support Plan 2014 today.

Click here for a printable PDF.

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