New Island Greenway Project: Water Quality Study
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1998 Aerial photo of New Island posted by David Fyfe, click on image for more
Purpose: To develop and maintain data regarding the quality of the water in the riparian zone of New Island. This data may eventually be used to aid in the development of a greenway on New Island.
Methodology: Unlike other studies on New Island it is extremely difficult to develop a statistical approach to collecting samples because of the fact that there are limited places to sample from and they are scattered around the Island. Each sample site is recorded using a GPS (Garmin GPS12 Map) as this will aid in mapping the sample sites. Each sample has been studied in terms of several characteristics each of which are shown in the results. Each test is explained in the results table as well.
Procedure: Each sample has been carefully tested with LaMotte Limnology Kit Model: AM-02 following the enclosed procedures for each test.
Results: Results are shown in the table below. All numbers (except pH) are shown in parts per million (ppm) unless otherwise noted. Click on category heading for a description. Click on the sample number for the location of the sample site as well as an image of the site.
|Sample Site||Date/Time recorded||GPS Location||pH||Total Hardness||Nitrates||Phosphates||Dissolved Oxygen||Carbon Dioxide||Silica||Chloride|
|Ex-Tap||02/10/02 13:00EST||n/a||7.0||28||< 0.88||< 0.2||10.5||6||6||--|
|1||03/07/02 10:27EST||N42°26'59.7" W075°02'38.9"||7.0||72||< 0.88||< 0.2||4.2||9||3||20|
|2||03/07/02 10:41EST||N42°26'59.1" W075°02'38.8"||6.0||84||< 0.88||< 0.2||5.4||25||2.5||22|
|3||03/07/02 10:55EST||N42°27'04.2" W075°02'28.9"||7.0||78||< 0.88||< 0.2||5.4||5||3||20|
|4||03/07/02 11:12EST||N42°27'02.8" W075°02'21.6"||7.0||86||< 0.88||< 0.2||6.4||5||4||22|
|5||03/07/02 11:19EST||N42°27'02.2" W075°02'22.1"||6.5||86||< 0.88||< 0.2||6.0||17||6||24|
|6||03/07/02 11:29EST||N42°26'59.3" W075°02'13.3"||7.5||82||< 0.88||< 0.2||7.4||4||2||20|
|7||03/07/02 11:49EST||N42°26'58.8" W075°01'51.7"||6.0||128||< 0.88||< 0.2||< 0.2||70||2.5||16|
|8||03/07/02 11:54EST||N42°26'59.3" W075°01'50.3"||6.0||68||< 0.88||< 0.2||4.6||31||3||18|
|9||03/07/02 12:03EST||N42°26'58.8" W075°01'47.4"||7.0||80||< 0.88||< 0.2||6.6||7||2.5||20|
|10||03/07/02 12:18EST||N42°27'00.1" W075°02'42.3"||7.5||82||< 0.88||< 0.2||7.2||3||3||22|
|11||04/17/02 16:45EST||n/a||6.5||84||< 0.88||< 0.2||5.6||22||5||18|
|12||04/17/02 17:14EST||n/a||6.5||80||< 0.88||< 0.2||5.8||18||4||16|
|13||04/17/02 17:31EST||n/a||6.0||78||< 0.88||< 0.2||4.0||55||2.5||12|
|14||04/17/02 17:52EST||n/a||6.0||82||< 0.88||< 0.2||4.2||28||3||16|
The waters of New Island appear healthy and there is no evidence of any major pollution in either the Susquehanna River itself or its surrounding wetlands on New Island. The good quality of water in this area may be a result of environment it is in. New Island is a pristine ecosystem that has been well isolated from human development, and the decline in agriculture along the upper Susquehanna may be reasons why the water quality is as good as it is. Besides the lightly used I-88 and SR-23, there are little sources for urban runoff in the area.
The following are averages for each characteristic studied:
|Total Hardness||84 ppm||good (medium-hard)|
|Nitrates||< 0.88 ppm||good|
|Phosphates||< 0.2 ppm||good|
|Dissolved Oxygen||6 ppm||good|
|Carbon Dioxide||21 ppm||good|
While the water quality appears healthy from the tests that I conducted, it is important to realize that these were all one time tests on single samples. This is important to note because water quality will vary seasonally, as well as with precipitation patterns, snow melt, and runoff. My samples were taken during a relatively dry period where there was little or no runoff occurring. Due to the dry winter there was no snow pack and no snow melt to increase runoff. It would be a good idea to continue to monitor the water quality of New Island through future samples and tests at various times of the year. Only then could the overall water quality be determined.
Conclusions for individual tests:
New island: Looking West (on old railroad bed)
New Island: Looking North (I-88 in background)
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Page created by Timothy Caley on 03/04/2002. Last updated on 04/19/2002.