STONY BROOK, N.Y., January 15, 2019 – The New York State Center for Clean Water Technology at Stony Brook University is awarding a total of $753,535 to local water districts to combat the rise of emerging water contaminants on Long Island. Among the districts receiving awards including the Plainview and Greenlawn water districts, which will receive a combined award in the amount of $369,000; Suffolk County Water Authority which will receive $222,205; and, Hicksville Water District which will receive $162,330 in grant funding.
In October last year, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced $200 million in grant funding to assist communities in addressing federally unregulated contaminants in their drinking water such as PFOA, PFOS, and 1,4-dioxane. Of the grant funding, $15 million has been awarded to communities already implementing innovative pilot technologies and system upgrades to treat these emerging contaminants.
With some of the nation’s highest concentrations of 1,4-dioxane — a widely used solvent that can be found in products such as adhesives and sealants — found in Long Island’s water supply, safe drinking water has become a critical public health issue. Stony Brook University’s Center for Clean Water Technology has dedicated its research efforts to developing methods that remove emerging contaminants such as PFOA, PFOS, and 1,4-dioxane from Long Island’s drinking water supply.
“This initiative advance’s the Center’s mission to develop technologies that protect drinking water quality for New York citizens,” said Christopher J. Gobler, Ph.D., Endowed Chair of Coastal Ecology and Conservation in the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences at Stony Brook University and Director of the New York State Center for Clean Water Technology. “We believe these pilot projects are an important step toward ensuring this likely carcinogen is effectively removed from public water supplies.”
Hicksville Water District Superintendent, Anthony Iannone, said: “The Hicksville Water District is grateful to the Stony Brook Center for Clean Water Technology for helping to support the vital treatment of these emerging contaminants. These funds will support the costs associated with implementing an Advanced Oxidation Processing facility and our ability to treat 1,4-dioxane, and other emerging contaminants, down to levels of non-detect. We are excited to capitalize on this support from Stony Brook to lessen the burden on local taxpayers and support the costs associated with piloting this new technology.”
Plainview Water District Superintendent, Stephen Moriarty, said: “We are excited to begin piloting alternative Advanced Oxidation Process (AOP) methods for the removal of 1,4-dioxane from our sole-source aquifer. As a water provider, our primary goal is to provide a safe and reliable drinking water to the residents in our community. Thanks to the grant funding from the Center for Clean Water Technology at Stony Brook University, our partnership with the Greenlawn Water District will not only improve our ability to fulfill our mission, but will have a significant impact on charting the future path for the treatment of 1,4-dioxane throughout the region.”
Greenlawn Water District Superintendent, Robert Santoriello, added, “The Board of Commissioners and staff here at the District are most grateful to be afforded this opportunity to conduct a pilot study with our fellow partner, Plainview Water District. Hopefully, the outcome of the study will result in a viable remediation method for our source water in treating 1,4-dioxane. We and our fellow Public Water suppliers constantly strive to provide our consumers with a pure and plentiful water supply at reasonable cost.”
SCWA Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey W. Szabo said: “This grant will allow us to test two alternate Advanced Oxidation Process systems at the site of our existing, groundbreaking AOP system in Central Islip, so we’ll be able a provide a true apples-to-apples comparison with an existing AOP. One is a UV lamp system that will use chlorine, instead of peroxide, as an oxidant to destroy 1,4-dioxane, which could be beneficial, as chlorine is less expensive than peroxide. The other project will not use a chemical feed at all for an oxidant, thus eliminating chemicals costs, storage and handling risks if the system is successful. We’re very excited to begin to test these two potential advancements in the effort to address 1,4-dioxane contamination as effectively as possible.”
About the Center for Clean Water Technology (CCWT) at Stony Brook University
The CCWT was founded by New York state Governor Andrew Cuomo in 2015 to marshal the and private-sector resources of New York State and beyond to develop more cost-effective technologies that will restore and protect water quality. During the past three years, CCWT has developed novel approaches to successfully remove contaminants from onsite wastewater and groundwater and has worked collaboratively with water suppliers to refine technologies for removing persistent organic contaminants from public drinking water supplies. More details regarding CCWT can be found at: https://www.stonybrook.edu/cleanwater
About Stony Brook University
Stony Brook University, widely regarded as a SUNY flagship, is going beyond the expectations of what today’s public universities can accomplish. Since its founding in 1957, this young university has grown to become one of only four University Center campuses in the State University of New York (SUNY) system with more than 25,700 students and 2,500 faculty members, and 18 NCAA Division I athletic programs. Our faculty have earned numerous prestigious awards, including the Nobel Prize, Pulitzer Prize, Indianapolis Prize for animal conservation, Abel Prize and the inaugural Breakthrough Prize in Mathematics. The University offers students an elite education with an outstanding return on investment: U.S.News & World Report ranks Stony Brook among the top 50 public universities in the nation. Its membership in the Association of American Universities (AAU) places Stony Brook among the top 62 research institutions in North America. As part of the management team of Brookhaven National Laboratory, the University joins a prestigious group of universities that have a role in running federal R&D labs. Stony Brook University is a driving force in the region’s economy, generating nearly 60,000 jobs and an annual economic impact of $6.4 billion. Our state, country and world demand ambitious ideas, imaginative solutions and exceptional leadership to forge a better future for all. The students, alumni, researchers and faculty of Stony Brook University are prepared to meet this challenge.
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