Water Resource Protection | Nonpoint Source Pollution
Thankfully, the U.S. has come a long way from the days when untreated, hazardous waste was habitually poured into the nation's waters by sewage treatment plants, factories, and other specific points of discharge. But pollution that can't be directly linked to a source has proven to be far more difficult to contain. Nonpoint source (NPS) pollution occurs when rainfall or snowmelt moves across land, picks up pollutants such as fertilizers and bacteria from pet waste, and then deposits these pollutants into lakes, rivers, coastal waters, and ground water. According to EPA, NPS pollution is now the biggest cause of water quality problems in the country.
NEIWPCC facilitates a Nonpoint Source Workgroup, comprised of NPS program managers from the New England states, New York State, New Jersey, and EPA. The workgroup meets four times a year and helps all parties involved stay abreast of developments in program policies and funding. Federal funding of NPS projects is supported by Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, and each year, EPA issues a new version of its "319 Guidance," which outlines what types of projects are eligible to receive funding.
NEIWPCC also coordinates the Annual NPS Conference, a 3-day gathering that brings together all those in New England and New York State involved in NPS management. We have also coordinated NPS outreach workshops and developed various NPS-related publications.
For more information, contact Clair Ryan, the coordinator of our Nonpoint Source Workgroup.