Owasco Watershed Lake Association Update

Submitted by Rick Nelson

The Owasco Watershed Lake Association (OWLA) Board is busy with existing projects and developing new ones for water quality improvements and watershed awareness.

Trained Harmful Algal Bloom spotting volunteers started two weeks ago to check all around the lakeshore for HABs. Very few have arrived so far.

Our roadside ditch remediation program continues in cooperation with the Cayuga County Soil and Water Conservation District to reduce future sediment and nutrient loading into Owasco Lake.

In addition, the OWLA Board is in the initial stages of new efforts for the late summer into Fall:
• to increase awareness – interact with school teachers to incorporate water quality educational programs such as those available from the Finger Lakes Institute at Hobart and William Smith Colleges;
• install roadside signs highlighting the watershed boundaries, and important measures citizens can take to protect Owasco Lake.
• a tree planting program will hopefully blossom into a Lake wide effort with many volunteers; and
• a trash pickup day/week, hopefully Lake wide, to remove trash and debris from our shorelines, ditches, and streams.

For more info visit www.owla.org.

Photo credit: Rick Nelson


CCE Cayuga County Welcomes 4-H STEM Educator Kim Oswald

CCE Cayuga County is pleased to announce the hiring of Kim Oswald as our 4-H STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) Educator. Kim will be providing multiple opportunities for hands-on and engaging STEM activities for our youth.

Kim is a graduate of the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Studies. As a student, Kim engaged with the Syracuse community promoting STEM and environmental education through schools, community gardens and libraries. She has also worked as a naturalist at Beaver Lake Nature Center in Baldwinsville, N.Y., as well as in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area in Idaho. Kim is excited to apply her education and experience to create exciting programs for youth in Cayuga County.

Kim also looks forward to bringing her experience leading stream water quality monitoring and lake monitoring to 4-Hers to learn about their local watershed. Kim will bring her experience of working with the Great Lakes Research Consortium to include cutting edge research and findings about water quality, to ensure that her programs are up to date with today’s research.

She can be reached at klo55@cornell.edu, 315-255-1183 Ext. 234. STEM Sparks Curiosity

City of Auburn Earth Day Proclamation

The City of Auburn wanted to share their proclamation for the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day.  Please view it here.

Above photo is of the City of Auburn’s North Division Hydro-Facility.

The photo below is of the City of Auburn’s Mill Street Dam looking down river at the hydro-electric facility.

Mill Street Dam looking down river at the hydro-electric facility
Mill Street Dam looking down river at the hydro-electric facility


Residential Guidelines to Protect Water Quality in Cayuga County

The Cayuga County Nutrient and Sediment Working Group of the Cayuga County WQMA prepared the Residential Guidelines to Protect Water Quality in Cayuga County, a set of guidelines recommended for homeowners to follow in order to minimize the impact of stormwater from their properties.  This document was approved and adopted by the Cayuga County WQMA on February 6, 2020 and the Cayuga County Legislature on February 25, 2020.

The Cayuga County WQMA and Legislature encourages the adoption and implementation of these practices among all people.

These guidelines are available here.