A new study has confirmed what most in the tri-state area have joked about for years: the Hudson River is filthy.
According to a recent Hudson Riverkeeper report, nearly half of the samples taken from the Hudson River between northern New Jersey and New York City failed to adhere to the Environmental Protection Agency’s safe swimming guidelines.
Mary Alice Williams from New Jersey TV News interviewed Cliffside Park residents who proclaimed they would never swim in the river.
“It’s just murky and smells and…not clean,” one resident explained.
Close to half of the water at the tested point failed safe swimming guidelines, compared with 23 percent in the Hudson River Estuary in general.
Dan Shapley, Hudson Riverkeeper’s Water Quality Program Manager, noted that the poor quality was something they want to improve.
“This is our public beach,” he explained, “…and this is where we’re swimming.”
The culprit is likely outdated sewer systems, where sewage mixes with overflow storm water on the way to waste treatment facilities.
Recent legislation required system operators to notify the state Department of Environmental Protection within an hour of any spills so they can notify the public.
Governor Christie let the bill expire without signing it, and instead directed leaders to craft long-term plans to address the issue.