With Hurricane Sandy approaching, DEP Western Operations Division Chief John Vickers provided local officials with a summary of reservoir conditions.
Currently, the Ashokan Reservoir is at 77.8% storage and spilling over the dividing weir from the West Basin to the East Basin. Additional void was created by releasing waters from the West Basin in accordance with the Interim Protocol for Operational Releases. Releases started on 20th of October, releasing approximately 4 billion gallons to date. Turbidity of releases has been near or below the 30 NTU limit. Currently, it is 28.7.
Shandaken Tunnel was opened today to divert water from Schoharie Reservoir to lower the storage in that reservoir, which is currently at 92.1 %. Turbidity at the tunnel is currently 37 NTU. Diversions will be ramped up to approximately 500 MGD. NYSDEC authorized a waiver from the turbidity difference limits in the Shandaken SPDES until 1st of November. NYSDEC has also granted a waiver from the Operational Release turbidity limit for the Ashokan Release until 1st of November. Releases from Ashokan will continue so diversions will not negate the additional void already created.