2014 Citizens' Water Quality Testing Program

Click on the markers at each site for photos and test results, or click here for a table showing results for all sites.

Blue icons: continuing CWQT sites
Green icons: new sites this season
Turquoise icons: previous CWQT sites; no sampling so far this season
Purple icons: testing by Bronx River Alliance this season

Scroll down for more information on the project:


View 2014 Citizens' Water Quality Testing program--sampling sites and result in a larger map

For 20 weeks starting May 22, volunteers from local boathouses and community groups will be collecting weekly water samples at boat launches and docks from Yonkers to Jamaica Bay. Using EPA-approved kits from IDEXX laboratories, our partners at The River Project will test the samples for microbes of the genus Enterococcus (“Entero”). Enterococci are commonly found in the feces of humans and other warm-blooded animals; their presence in the water is an indication of fecal pollution and the possible presence of pathogens that could be harmful to human health.This is the same bacteria that the NYC Department of Health tests for at the city's bathing beaches. 

We will publish test results here every Friday evening through October 3. The idea is to create a baseline of data that, when correlated with rainfall, wind and tide information, can help better inform boaters of likely water quality at nearby launch sites. Local boaters and boating groups have a nuanced understanding of local variations in weather, current and topography, and thus are best able to assess the risk of exposure posed by the particular kind of boating that they intend to do. We therefore feel we should present only the results of our testing, plus basic tide and rainfall information, and leave the specific interpretation and decision-making to them.

If you would like to volunteer to sample or help out in the lab, or be added to our weekly water testing email list, please let us know by sending an email to water-quality@nycwatertrail.org.

Thanks to the more than 20 community boathouses, community groups, and waterfront parks that are supporting our program this year, and special thanks to the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Alex Herzan, John Rossiello, Ray Fusco and John Bradley.

For a terrific explanation of how weather affects a watershed, complete with interactive tools to further your understanding, visit the website of our partner group, the Newtown Creek Alliamce at www.newtowncreekalliance.org