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Lewes, Delaware
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November 30, 2012     Cape Gazette
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November 30, 2012

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12 FRIDAY. NOVEMBER 30- MONDAY. DECEMBER 3. 2012 NEWS Cape Gazette Lewes Continued from page 9 ban was lifted Nov. 7 for the Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean, but remained in effect until Nov. 17 for the Inland Bays. "To protect human health and the environment, the harvesting of bivalves (clams, oysters, mus- sels and other triter feeding ani- mals) in the Inland Bays growing areas will remain closed until water quality sampling ensures that our bivalve shellfish are safe for human consumption," DNREC officials said before the ban was lifted. O'Mara said the Lewes over- flow did not contribute to the shutdown of Inland Bays shell- fish harvest. Normally, about 2 percent of a discharge in Lewes makes its way into Rehoboth Bay; the remaining 98 percent flows into the Delaware Bay, he said. Stormwater runoff that flowed into the Inland Bays fol- lowing Sandy was a combination of failed septic systems, fecal waste from wildlife and domes- tic animals, and other bacteria sources, he said. Peak bacteria levels were ele- vated throughout the Inland Bays following the superstorm, said Michael Bott, DNREC environ- mental scientist. Those numbers dropped significantly before shellfish harvesting areas were reopened. "Most recent reading showed almost nondetectable levels of bacteria," Bott said. Stormwater runoff into the In- land Bays was the major reason for elevated bacteria levels, said O'Mara, adding the storm helped demonstrate that buffers, rain gardens and filtering devices for stormwater runoff are critical to control pollution in the Inland Bays watershed. "There aren't too many point sources that have been con- trolled," he said during a recent Center for the Inland Bays Citi- zens Advisory Committee meet- ing. "Everything ended up in the bays. This is why we had the [shellfish harvest] shutdown." "It is a wake-up call," he said. Communities that have systems in place to reduce runoff did well, he said, but others that have nothing in place to control stormwater fared badly. Education Continued from page 9 nutrients out of stormwater had positive water quality readings following the storm, O'Mara said. Other communities did not fare so well. "I'm concerned with the amount- of matter that ran into the bays during the storm," he said. Stormwater containing fecal waste from failed septic systems, wildlife and domestic animals contributed to inflated levels of bacteria in the Inland Bays. High levels of bacteria forced the clo- sure of shellfish harvesting throughout the area for several weeks after the storm. Environmental groups should focus on educating the public about the importance of control- ling stormwater runoffbecause it will only occur if all stakeholders participate - state legislators, county government and resi- dents, O'Mara said. Improving water quality in the Inland Bays requires a joint ef- fort, he said. "It is going to be parcel by par- cel, community by community," O'Mara said. Read more about stormwater runoff at http://capegazette.vil- MELISSA STEELE PHOTO DNREC SECRETARY Collin O'Mara speaks during a Center for the Inland Bays committee meeting. floods-lewes-wastewater- plant/927747?cid=1578871. Certified Public Accountant and Business Advisor We'can help you get ready for tax season! Year End Tax Planning, Quickbooks Set-up, Bookkeeping, , Business Advice for All Entities... and morel Located at 19606 Coastal Hwy, Rehoboth Beach iF ........... , (8oo)748-03s4. ..... i May your smile be Merry & Bright! Happy Holidays! Dr. Michael A. Poleck 1632 Savannah Rd., Suite 6 Lewes, DE Let the holiday spirit flourish in your home with fresh floors and Christmas decor. Let us brighten your home for the holidays with the lateststyles in carpet, hardwood, ceramic, vinyl, laminate, and cork flooring. Don't wait any longer to deck your halls in grand style! Stop intoday and let our Santa's helpers assist you in finding the perfect choice. Select mPw 10% to 30% off OQOQOQQOOOO~OOOOOOOQOQQ00 Carpet Vinyl Tile Laminates Wood Cork Expert Steam Cleaning All Types of Repairs sit our showroom at Wescoats Comer & Savannah Rd (behind the 302.644.8772 Open Mon. - Fri. 10.5, Sat. 10.2 new Walgreens)