The Long Island Sound Study (LISS) was initiated in 1985 by a partnership between the federal government and the states of Connecticut and New York. In 1987, the Long Island Sound was designated an "Estuary of National Significance" under the National Estuary Program (NEP). The NEP is conducted under the auspices of Section 320 of the Clean Water Act to protect nationally significant estuaries from pollution, development, and overuse.
The Long Island Sound Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan was approved in September 1994. Researchers, regulators, user groups and other concerned organizations and individuals, collectively known as the LISS Management Conference, have been working together to protect and improve the health of the Sound by implementing the CCMP. The New York State Clean Water/Clean Air Bond Act has provided over $200,000,000 for CCMP implementation and the restoration of Long Island Sound.
More detailed information about the Long Island Sound Study is available at www.longislandsoundstudy.net.
What is Suffolk County's role in the LISS?
The Long Island Sound Study has mandated a 58.5% reduction in anthropogenic (from human activities) nitrogen inputs. This reduction applies to each “management zone,” including Suffolk County (“LISS Zone 11"). As part of the nitrogen reduction process, a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for nitrogen has been adopted by New York State to meet the 58.5% load reduction requirement. Plans must be developed to attain the TMDL, and it must be implemented over 15 years. Unlike many other LISS management zones, Suffolk County is unlikely to meet the nitrogen reduction requirements based on sewage treatment plant upgrades alone. Therefore, New York State recognized the need to conduct a watershed planning process that considers land use management and non-point source pollution.
The Office of Ecology has received a two-year $300,000 grant from NYSDEC to manage the LISS Suffolk County North Shore Watershed management Program. A water quality monitoring program was established in the spring of 1999 to support this effort. Areas sampled include the Huntington/Northport Bay complex, Nissequogue River, Stony Brook Harbor, Port Jefferson Harbor, Mt. Sinai Harbor, and Mattituck Creek. A management effort will soon begin to develop strategies to meet the nitrogen input reductions in Suffolk County. As part of this process, other pollution and habitat/living resource issues will also be evaluated.
Where can I find more information on the Long Island Sound?
For more information, visit any of the links below or contact the Office of Ecology. To send an email message, use the "Contact US" button on the Health Services Home Page.
UCONN MYSound Website
Long Island Sound Study