• Analysis of the Existing Water Quality Database for the Sandy Creek and South Sandy Creek Watersheds – 1997 to 2005

      Makarewicz, Joseph C.; Lewis, Theodore W.; The College at Brockport (2006-10-01)
      Runoff from agricultural lands containing soil and nutrients poses a known threat to the water quality of embayments and coastal regions of Lake Ontario (Makarewicz 2000). The Lakeview Marsh State Wildlife Management Area in Jefferson County, NY is a prime example of these types of ecologically valuable coastal wetland and embayment habitats. This embayment / wetland complex is fed by the watersheds of Sandy Creek and South Sandy Creek. The mouths of these creeks contain globally rare freshwater dunes, diverse wetlands and several types of globally rare vegetation. Sandy Creek also provides an emergency unfiltered drinking water supply for the Village of Adams and the Hamlet of Adams Center. In general, the environmental effects of agricultural runoff, including eutrophication and sedimentation, on surface water bodies are serious local, regional and national issues. These issues create a dilemma for governmental leaders in agricultural areas; their most important economic industry, agriculture, may also be the cause of environmental degradation. For farmers, this is further exacerbated by the high profile increase of governmental regulation on agricultural operations. The agricultural industry needs scientific evidence that they are capable of being part of the solution not just part of the problem.
    • Causes of Foaming and Surfactant Source Identification in Sandy Creek Orleans and Monroe County, New York

      Makarewicz, Joseph C.; Cady, Bruce L.; The College at Brockport (1994-03-01)
      This study concludes that the Albion Wastewater Treatment Plant increases the anionic surfactant (MBAS) concentrations in Sandy Creek as it passes the plant discharge pipe. This increase ranges from less than 10% to more than 100% of background levels. However, for all samples collected in our investigation, the total concentration (background plus plant effluent) never reached 100 µg/L, the upper level for natural waters.
    • Nutrient and Sediment Loss from the Watersheds of Orleans County Year 2: Johnson, Oak Orchard and Sandy Creek Watersheds. June 1998 - May 1999

      Makarewicz, Joseph C.; Lewis, Theodore W.; The College at Brockport (1999-12-01)
      In recognition of the need to acquire a uniform, organized approach to addressing surface water degradation and given the diverse nature of non-point sources of pollution, the Soil and Water Conservation District has recently formed a committee whose specific task is to address water quality issues. Since the reduction of non-point source pollution is likely to occur through the implementation of Best Management Practices (BMP's) and changes in land use regulations, this committee provides the necessary foundation for these changes to occur. This committee has become known as the Orleans County Water Quality Coordinating Committee (WQCC). With the combined expertise of the Water Quality Coordinating Committee and the availability of actual field data, progress towards healthier freshwater resources is underway. A recommendation of the WQCC was to move forward in prioritizing the major tributaries in terms of high nutrient losses from the watershed. The objectives of Orleans County's program include: 1. Determination of the status of Orleans County's primary surface waters and observe changes over time; 2. Documentation of what types and amounts of nutrients may be adversely impacting water quality and the conditions which generate them; 3. Determination of what urban, rural, industrial and agricultural practices within a watershed may be impacting water quality; 4. Development of a technical database for informed water quality management decisions; and, 5. Assessment of the feasibility and effectiveness of potential control measures likely to be used to reduce non-point and point sources of pollution. Determination of sources and magnitude of soil and nutrient losses from a watershed is prerequisite to remedial action and essential to making cost-effective land management decisions as it reduces the likelihood of costly miscalculations based on the assumption of soil and nutrient sources and modeling rather than their actual identification. We have found that this process enhances the ability of concerned groups to obtain external funding for demonstration and remedial projects.
    • Sandy Creek Monroe/Orleans Counties, New York

      Makarewicz, Joseph C.; Nowak, Matthew J.; The College at Brockport (2010-01-01)
      Sandy Creek is located in Monroe and Orleans Counties in New York State and drains 89 mi2 of land. Surrounding land use is predominantly agriculture, though there are also residential influences. The Orleans County Soil and Water Conservation District through the Water Quality Coordinating Committee (WQCC) has monitored nutrient loss from the watershed through continuous automated monitoring and event sampling. Sandy Creek was identified as moderately polluted, not as pristine as forested watersheds but not as polluted as streams receiving partially treated sewage. Soil loss was highest (75% of total) during precipitation events suggesting that agricultural runoff may play a large role in cultural eutrophication of the creek (Makarewicz 2000). Nuisance algae and algal mat development foul the nearshore waters along the southern shoreline of Lake Ontario and are major causes of beach closings and limited water recreation. This short report provides a synopsis of data collected monthly from May through September (2003 to 2009) on the water quality of Sandy Creek and the lakeside (swimmable depth) of Lake Ontario near the mouth of the creek.