The Water System Updates

The Water System Updates

In 2008, 98.3% of New York City’s water came from the Catskill/Delaware system. The Croton system provided 1.7% of the daily supply to the City. New York City’s groundwater system in southeastern Queens was off-line for the entire 2008 calendar year. Today, 75% of the 2,000 square mile public and private watershed is covered by forests, and dislocation by eminent domain is no longer a concern. The system is now seen as one of the greatest modern successes in ecosystem services management in the United States and is modeled around the world. Although bitterness and animosity still linger, thoughtful partnerships with more balanced power dynamics have begun to change those relationships toward one of care­ful cooperation.

A computer generated map of NYC that is color-coded to show how whole boroughs, or parts of boroughs are serviced by the different watershed supplies. Orange is the predominant color, showing how the Catskill/Delaware system serves all of Brooklyn, Staten Island, Queens, and parts of Manhattan and the Bronx.
Water supply system map showing how each system services parts of NYC. Source: NYC DEP. Link.

The New York City Drinking Water Supply & Quality Report 

The Commissioner of the New York City Environmental Protection Services publishes a yearly supply and quality report sharing findings of year-long studies conducted on the quality of New York City’s drinking water. To read more about how the study was conducted or the action the government is taking to preserve important water channels, the full report can be found here

In May, 2020, the Delaware Aqueduct Bypass Tunnel, a significant milestone in a project to repair the longest tunnel in the world. “Each steel segment is 16 feet in diameter, 40 feet long, and weighs about 106,000 pounds. The $1B repair project was completed in August 2020, ensuring that the aqueduct continues to deliver water from the Catskills to New York City after more than a century in service.

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