Friday, December 9, 2011

Shellfish Harvesters, The Sewage Treatment Plant, Rain and a "Perfect Storm"

People who come to this site, know i love tables and charts and such.
I try to give the raw data and my conclusions so anyone can make their own thoughts.
This issue combines politics, egos, facts and anger all rolled up with mother nature.
The Stamford Advocate had a recent article on the treatment plant and its problems and how some professional shellfish harvesters are feeling the brunt of the issues, but i do not think it is the entire story.

First the ego - the main person at the treatment plant hid problems with the plant, which made her look good, even to me. We found a few potential issues, but could not get verification that it was the Stamford plant - even from inside sources.  Because of this, I defended her many times, but she hid information and the city is paying a reduced fine because of it.
The politics - many people high in Stamford politics believed the lies and now the people of Stamford are going to be paying to correct things.
The facts - the treament plant has been having problems since 2004 when they installed the UV disinfection system.
The politics again - if you ever want to get any enforcement done, get someone who enforces them mad. The State Aquaculture Department has been very firm about all the regulations as far as shellfish harvesting since this issue came out.
more facts - it is not just the treament plant to blame, we have gotten a lot of rain this year and not just rain, but heavy rain -
to the table

Rain year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1985 1.9 0.77 1.182 6.77 4.23 5.38 5.292 5.451 1.5 9.702 2.45
1986 3.84 0.51 2.94 1.75 2.02 2.75 3.22 4.08 0.55 2.4 5.1 6.35
1987 2.65 9.232 1.652 2.591 2.77 5.67 6.021 3.942 3.722 2.63
1988 1.841 4.762 0.533 5.56 3.48 3.902 4.223 9.334
1989 1.3 4.302 12.49 4.83 3.55 5.451 3.831 3.02 2.2
1990 2.61 4.39 2.72 1.75 6.391 1.85 8.77 1.68
1991 3.87 2.12 4.094 2.713 4.593 1.595 3.28 7.584 3.892 0.842 3.415 3.81
1992 1.44 2.08 4.272 2.256 3.378 4.003 3.15 5.883 2.625 1.287 5.434 5.3
1993 2.52 3.78 3.973 3.124 1.848 1.521 1.5 2.144 4.646 2.453 1.359 3.41
1994 6.9 3.86 6.871 2.554 3.398 2.605 3.62 4.046 2.064 1.072 3.484 3.37
1995 3.03 3.55 0.747 2.852 1.372 1.103 1.38 0.72 2.763 6.593 3.875 2.42
1996 5.58 2.36 5.61 7.661 2.128 5.192 7.93 0.842 6.015 8.67 4.192 7.41
1997 4.08 1.81 8.351 3.21 4.141 3.38 4.59 4.223 1.4 1.685 3.604 2.14
1998 5.81 6.29 5.691 3.903 4.81 6.911 1.65 3.741 2.833 3.503 0 0.36
1999 6.66 4.99 4.224 1.551 3.901 1.113 1.95 3.57 14 5.45 4.584 3.2
2000 4.94 2.58 5.167 4.13 4.947 6.274 8.66 5.426 7.842 0.764 6.181 3.54
2001 3.14 2.84 6.937 3.874 4.13 5.9 2.7 6.38 5.98 0.15 0.92 1.12
2002 2.14 0.78 4.87 4.38 5.14 6.32 1.12 4.22 7.8 6.73 3.63 5.57
2003 0.53 2.8 3.99 3.24 6.34 7.4 2.05 4.36 5.01 6.09 3.58 4.3
2004 0.84 2.43 3.71 5.94 3.84 3.5 9.38 3.94 11.15 1.321 4.16 2.61
2005 2.92 1.4 1.86 4.75 1.64 2.83 2.97 2.6 3.27 13.89 3.43 3.85
2006 4.68 1.69 0.74 7.17 5.87 5.43 4 8.5 3.72 5.65 5.78 2.78
2007 4.09 0.58 4.65 12.47 1.47 4.03 3.68 3.19 1.53 10.26 2.98 3.73
2008 3.18 6.71 5.02 2.67 3.99 2.98 2.62 5.3 7.86 2.831 3.45 5.24
2009 1.77 0.55 1.56 3.98 3.1 8.68 4.29 3.46 1.9 6.36 1.57 6.4
2010 1.74 5.19 10.71 2.37 2.9 2.23 4.39 2.84 5.91 3.14 2.03 3.41
2011 1.99 4.57 5.17 5.89 4.88 6.205 1.42 12.54 7.78 5.01 3.28 1.61
Avg: 3.41 2.84 4.30 4.13 4.07 3.96 3.65 4.66 4.87 4.36 3.80 3.63

The bottom line is we have had a lot of rain this year, but there is more, yes more 2" and 3" rain events

Number of Rain Event > 2" Total Rain over 2" Number of Rain Event > 3" Total Rain over 3"
3 7.65 1 3.25
2 5.35
4 10.63 1 3.82
2 4.84
3 8.9 1 4.69
2 6.08 1 4.03
2 5.46 1 3.34
4 8.58
1 2.4
1 2.1
1 2.07
5 16.88 3 11.91
2 4.19
2 5.41
5 13.905 3 8.125
5 13.93 1 3.87
1 2.81
3 8.68 1 4.15
2003 - 3 7.5
2004 - 13 19.23 5 8.82
2005 - 8 12.83 7 10.4
2006 - 6 12.77 3 8.36
2007 - 9 22.59 4 15.07
2008 - 5 13.09 2 8.09
2009 - 1 3.5 1 3.5
2010 - 13 20.15 7 8.83
2011 - 12 22.78 6 11.81
118 264.31 48 122.07


The 2" event are important because they mean the plant is going to have problems,  The 3" is important because that is when the State Aquaculture closes the commercial shellfish beds (they also close for treatment plant issues)
The angry is the shellfish harvesters who must weather, rain, treatment plant issues and a firm attitude by the State Aquaculture (and, if you are wondering, i support their firmness).


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