The Tin Brook Alliance, a group of concerned citizens who will try to protect the Tin Brook and the environment surrounding it, held its first meeting last Thursday.
One of the first items on the agenda is to create a watershed plan.
“Watershed plans can be very valuable in that they set the stage for the future,” Tin Brook Alliance member Kristen Brown said.
Watershed plans assemble the history of the river, take an assessment of the current conditions of the river, and determine how to protect the river in the future, Brown said. Watershed plans are usually a requirement of grant applications.
The plan will map out the watershed and its sources and endpoints.
The plan also requires water sampling; potential sampling locations include upstream of Walden’s wells, the point at which the Tin Brook empties into the Wallkill, and points identified by Orange County Planning Department and Orange County Soil and Water Department.
Members of the Tin Brook Alliance attend planning board meetings to keep track of the town’s land use and the potential impacts of proposed projects. The largest projects of concern are Medline, Project Sailfish and BHT Montgomery.
While exact events are still to be determined, members also plan to hold public events surrounding the Tin Brook.
Wallkill River Watershed Alliance president Jason West said the overall goal of a watershed alliance is to ensure the land surrounding the body of water doesn’t pollute the watershed. The Tin Brook Alliance is organized by the Wallkill River Watershed Alliance.
A watershed is all the land that drains to a common body of water, so waterbodies act as an indicator of adverse effects of human activity on land, West said. Watershed alliances not only protect water quality, but the broader environment as well.
“So, if you want to get involved in every facet of environmental organizing and making the environment a better place, watershed organizing is the place to do it,” West said.
To learn more or to join the Tin Brook Alliance, email the Wallkill River Watershed Alliance at firstname.lastname@example.org.