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State of New Jersey-Department of Environmental Protection-Division of Water Monitoring and Standards
State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
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The Director’s Office oversees all activities of the Division, including coordination of policy development, information dissemination and outreach. The Office sets and monitors progress towards various goals which assist the Division in achieving its mission.

General monitoring and assessment-related activities and publications are managed by this Office, including, NJ's Long Term Water Monitoring and Assessment Strategy.

Coordination with other external water monitoring programs is also a responsibility of the Director’s Office. As such, the Office coordinates the activities of the New Jersey Water Monitoring Council. The Office also oversees implementation of NJ's Water Quality Data Exchange System and the Department's participation in the Barnegat Bay initiative.

Fresh water and marine water monitoring, water quality standards, assessment and TMDL development, and restoration activities, within DWM&S, are covered by 3 bureaus. Click on the boxes below for more information about each bureau:


Bureau of Fresh Water and Biological Monitoring

The Bureau is responsible for monitoring the ambient conditions of the state's freshwater resources, both surface and ground water. This monitoring includes regular network sampling through statewide and rotating regional programs, specially requested projects to meet specific water information needs, and work to advance the application of state-of-the-art monitoring methods. Network sampling includes: about 200 River and Stream Physical/Chemical monitoring stations, including Barnegat Bay Long-Term Tributary Monitoring, and Continuous Monitoring; a network of approximately 750 Benthic Macroinvertebrate biological stream monitoring stations; over 200 Fish Assemblage biological stream monitoring stations; Fish Tissue monitoring in rivers, streams and lakes; Bacteriological river and streams sampling of approximately 80 sites per year; the statewide Ambient Lakes Monitoring Program of about 200 lakes; and monitoring support for NJGWS’s 150 shallow Ground Water stations. Some monitoring programs include partner organizations such as USGS, counties or watershed associations. Freshwater chemical and biological data and information are made available through state and national water databases and portals, as well as the Bureau’s webpage. In addition, the Bureau operates the Department's Biomonitoring Laboratory where toxicity testing, macroinvertebrate, fish, and algal studies are conducted. Algal studies include analysis of Chlorophyll ‘a’ and the cyanobacteria toxin microcystin. Rosedale-Lake

Bureau of Marine Water Monitoring

Glider-DeploymentThe Bureau is primarily responsible for New Jersey’s compliance with the National Shellfish Sanitation Program (NSSP), which sets guidelines for monitoring, analysis, and assessment of bacterial water quality used for the classification of New Jersey’s shellfish waters. This program consists of the collection and analysis of fecal coliform, from approximately 15,000 water samples collected annually from over 2,000 sampling stations. The Bureau is responsible for preparing New Jersey’s Vibrio parahaemolyticus Management Plan to reduce shellfish-related food-borne illnesses. Additionally, a phytoplankton monitoring program, as part of the NSSP-required Biotoxin Contingency Plan, uses aircraft remote sensing for chlorophyll and water samples (collected monthly from over 40 stations) to identify algal blooms and phytoplankton speciation. The Bureau also collects ambient nutrient data from a set of 42 probabilistically selected monitoring stations as well as water quality data for the Barnegat Bay Long Term Monitoring Program. Special Microbial Source Tracking projects (MST) and Nonpoint Source (NPS) Pollution projects are conducted in specified areas around the State, and specialized advanced microbial indicators (Coliphage, Antibiotic Resistance Analysis) are used to determine the source of bacterial pollution. Projects also include the use of Slocum Gliders and Real-time water quality monitoring buoys to gather continuous data to support New Jersey coastal waters assessment. All of the laboratory analyses are performed in-house at the Bureau’s State and FDA-certified laboratory. The Clean Shores Program, which aids Municipalities with the cleanup of debris from beaches and shorelines reducing hazards from debris in New Jersey’s coastal waters, as well as the Department’s coordination of Coastal Lakes activities, are also administered under the Bureau.

Bureau of Environmental Analysis, Restoration and Standards

The Bureau of Environmental Analysis, Restoration and Standards (BEARS) is responsible for conducting and coordinating water quality assessments of all waters of the State, including assessment of data collected by non-departmental entities (e.g., regional and local government agencies and volunteer monitoring organizations). and determining the causes and sources of water quality impairment. Assessment results are reported every two years in the New Jersey Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report (Integrated Report), which includes the Section 303(d) List of Water Quality Limited Waters (303(d) List). BEARS is also responsible for determining the pollutant reductions needed for restoration of water quality, through the development and implementation of Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) or watershed restoration plans. "Water quality impairment" means that waters do not fully support the designated uses established for those waters by the New Jersey Surface Water Quality Standards at N.J.A.C. 7:9B. BEARS is responsible for the development, adoption, and administration of New Jersey's Surface Water Quality Standards as well as the New Jersey Ground Water Quality Standards. BEARS is also responsible for administering the Clean Water Act Section 319(h) Nonpoint Source Pollution Control grant program and the AmeriCorps New Jersey Watershed Ambassadors Program, which is a community-oriented AmeriCorps environmental program designed to raise public awareness about watershed issues and promote watershed stewardship through hands-on experience.Chesler-Lake

For additional information, please contact Bruce Friedman, Director.

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Last Updated: October 30, 2017