Storm Water Initiative Aims to Reduce Pollution

By Eric Haun
Friday, July 11, 2014

Nassau County (New York) Executive Edward P. Mangano and Legislator Donald MacKenzie today announced a step forward in restoring health to waterways and beaches with the installation of technology that aims to reduce the amount of pollutants and debris that are carried to the waters through storm water drain pipes. The technology is manufactured by AbTech Industries (a subsidiary of Abtech Holdings Inc.) – a developer of storm water treatment technologies – who won the right to perform this storm water infrastructure work through a competitive bidding process.

"Storm water runoff is public enemy number one with regard to the quality of our waterways, fishing areas and beaches," said County Executive Mangano. "This new initiative is a major step forward in protecting our environment as it helps remove debris and other pollutants before they enter our waterways, accumulate on our beaches and harm marine life."

Under a pilot program, a designated outfall pipe in Bay Park will be outfitted with anti-microbial storm water treatment technology known as Smart Sponge Plus. The technology removes pollutants, such as sediment, nutrients, pathogens, petroleum compounds and floatable debris from the storm water before it exits the outfall pipe. Additional outfall pipes will be outfitted as Federal funds become available.

In recent years, Nassau County has faced major storms that have created tidal surges resulting in backflow throughout storm drains. This backflow has carried pollution and invasive species to beaches and waterways, as well as flooded local roadways and lawns. AbTech is also upgrading storm water outfalls in Nassau County to strengthen infrastructure, add resiliency, reduce beach contamination and engineer outfalls to mitigate backflow and reduce flooding.

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