The LGA has successfully completed similar dredging projects on Lake George, most recently the 2009 project at Foster Brook. This project greatly improved navigation, removed 1,500 cubic yards of sediment, and largely restored the lake bottom. The fishery has greatly benefited, as the smelt started running again in the brook in 2010, after years of not running. Working behind a double set of turbidity curtains, the contractor completed the work in less than two weeks.
"We are very sensitive to the environmental risks that are inherent in these projects, and we painstakingly apply numerous measures to protect the sensitive ecosystem and maintain water quality," Lender said. "On projects where the LGA has been involved, we have witnessed remarkable contrasts between the water in the project area and the water in the main lake on the outside of the turbidity curtains. We keep the water in the main lake clear and contain the stirred up water within a series of carefully installed and maintained rows of sediment curtain. Before removing the curtains, we give the water in the project area sufficient time to settle out. Once it's clear we remove the curtains."
At Hague Brook, plans call for removing approximately 27,000 cubic yards of material from an approximately 10-acre area.
On each one of these delta dredging projects, the LGA has asked the municipalities to certify that identified upstream problem areas are remediated, and the municipalities have passed resolutions in support of the projects. On Hague Brook, two sediment retention ponds were created, through the joint efforts of the LGA, the Warren County Soil and Water Conservation District and the town of Hague. By slowing down the velocity of the water in the streams, these sediment ponds allow the sediment to drop out, preventing it from going into the lake and adding to the deltas. Creating and maintaining sediment ponds is much easier, much less expensive, and much less complex than removing deltas.
For more information and details about the delta removal projects, and the LGA's work to build and maintain upstream sediment ponds, the public may visit the LGA's Lake Saving Project pages at www.lakegeorgeassociation.org