Water Information In Abundance

Public forum, water plant tour, documentary screening and public hearing scheduled

Public Forum

Rockland County residents have ample opportunities over the next few weeks to ask questions and learn more about the one of the county’s most valuable resources – its water supply.

This evening, the Rockland Water Coalition hosts a public information forum about United Water’s proposed Haverstraw Water Supply Project.  The proposed desalination plant would draw up to 10 million gallons of water a day for drinking purposes from the Hudson River.  The forum begins at 6:30 p.m. with letter writing followed by a panel discussion with water experts from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. in Clarkstown Town Hall.

The along with other local environmental and civic groups states the plant would have an adverse environmental impact on Haverstraw Bay, a spawning area and nursery for fish throughout the Hudson River Estuary and the Atlantic Coast. Its other arguments against the proposed facility are that desalination is among the most energy-intensive and costly ways to produce drinking water. The suggested location of the plant’s water intakes, which is 3.5 miles from Entergy’s Indian Point nuclear power plant, have also raised opposition.

Plant Tour

Anyone interested in seeing the prototype plant can do so on Saturday.  United Water is holding an open house at its Haverstraw Water Supply Project's pilot facility in West Haverstraw with free facility tours from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. United Water states laboratory results show water from the Hudson, after being purified at the pilot facility, is as good as or better than the quality of water that is being delivered to Rocklanders' faucets now.

United Water describes the project as a major infrastructure initiative critical to the future of Rockland County. United Water says Rockland needs this project because its water demands are expected to outpace the current supply in the near future.

Documentary Screening

On Sunday, March 4, a screening of “Blue Gold: Water Wars” takes place at the Fellowship of Reconciliation in Nyack.  A discussion following the documentary will be facilitated by the Rockland Water Coalition.  The program goes from 2 p.m. to 4:30 pm with a requested donation of $10.

This is a description of the award winning documentary’s content

“In every corner of the globe, we are polluting, diverting, pumping, and wasting our limited supply of fresh water at an expediential level as population and technology grows. The rampant overdevelopment of agriculture, housing and industry increase the demands for fresh water well beyond the finite supply, resulting in the desertification of the earth.

Corporate giants force developing countries to privatize their water supply for profit. Wall Street investors target desalination and mass bulk water export schemes. Corrupt governments use water for economic and political gain. Military control of water emerges and a new geo-political map and power structure forms, setting the stage for world water wars.” 

Public Hearing

On Tuesday, March 6, the State Department of Environmental Conservation is hosting a public hearing at Haverstraw Town Hall in Garnerville at 2 p.m. and at 6 p.m.  The public hearing gives residents the chance to comment on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed desalination plant.  The deadline for written public comment to the DEC is April 20.


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