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Chemistry of Air, Precipitation & Streamwater

A key component of our program is long-term monitoring of the chemistry of our environment. Our monitoring allows us to understand the dynamics pollution produced in industrial processes, especially pollution from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and gasoline. Our program includes several methods that cover a broad range of pollutants.

Data

For a complete description of measurements, please see the Meta Data | For monthly and yearly summaries go to Data Summaries | For access to data go to Archived Data

Precipitation Chemistry

We collect precipitation chemistry data with an instrument that uses a sensor that causes a cover to open, revealing a clean bucket when precipitation occurs and closes when the precipitation ceases. The instrument collects rain, snow and ice. Samples are collected after every event and analyzed at the Cary Institute for pH and a suite of other constituents that are important for understanding our atmosphere. This is our longest data record; we have continuous data from 1983 to present.

Air Chemistry

Our air quality is monitored with a system similar to that used by the Clean Air Status and Trends Network (CASTNET). We collect air samples with low-volume filter packs, which allow us to monitor particles and gases that are important components of acid deposition. We also monitor ammonia concentration as part of the National Atmospheric Deposition Program (NADP), Ammonia Monitoring Network. In addition, we monitor ground-level ozone, a key component of smog, in partnership with the New York State Department of Conservation and continuous carbon dioxide with a Licor LI-840 CO2 analyzer. Our filter pack data and ozone data are from 1988 to present and our ammonia and CO2 data are from 2009 to present.

Streamwater Chemistry

Our stream monitoring program is a long-term data collection program that allows us to understand local as well as regional changes in the environment feeding our stream. The program began in 1985 and is the longest continuous chemistry dataset about the quality of streamwater in our region. Our program includes monthly grab samples collected at 2 sites on the East Branch of Wappinger Creek on the Cary Institute property. Stream samples are collected at the end of every month at low flow and are analyzed in our analytical lab for a suite of constituents that are important to ecosystem function. Additionally, we collect continuous temperature, stage height and specific conductance data at 15-minute intervals at one of the 2 sites.

About Our Stream

The stream is a tributary to the main branch of Wappinger Creek, which flows into the Hudson River at Wappingers Falls. The creek as it passes through the Cary Institute property is a relatively clean, unimpaired forest stream. It harbors reproducing populations of brown trout as well as other important native fish and is habitat for breeding birds including common merganzer and wood duck. About 1.6 km upstream from our monitoring site is the Village of Millbrook sewage treatment plant. The Village of Millbrook (population 1400) and the roads in the watershed of the stream are important sources of road salt to the stream.

 

1984-2018 MONTHLY AVERAGE WET DEPOSITION (kg/ha)
MONTHHCaClKMgNaNH4-NNO3-NPO4SO4SO4-SNH4-N+NO3-NVolume_cm
10.0230.030.210.010.010.10.050.180.0030.630.210.237.8
20.0240.040.160.010.010.080.080.210.0050.70.230.297.4
30.030.060.230.020.020.110.130.270.0071.020.340.399.2
40.030.090.190.020.020.090.180.270.0091.230.410.458.4
50.0410.090.170.060.030.070.290.320.0221.740.580.6110.3
60.050.070.130.030.020.040.270.340.0252.010.670.610.5
70.0790.080.140.020.020.040.290.460.0112.9810.7511.1
80.0490.050.120.020.020.040.180.290.0061.80.60.4710.6
90.0320.040.170.020.020.070.150.220.0151.220.410.3610.9
100.0220.040.210.020.020.10.110.170.0150.80.270.2810.2
110.0210.020.180.010.010.090.070.170.0040.660.220.248.7
120.0220.030.190.010.010.090.070.190.0030.680.230.259.2
PRECIPITATION ANNUAL VOLUME-WEIGHTED MEAN CONCENTRATIONS (mg/L)
YEARHCaClKMgNaNH4NH4-NNO3NO3-NPO4PO4-PSO4
19840.0510.110.210.090.040.090.370.291.560.350.0350.0112.07
19850.070.070.220.020.020.070.280.222.070.470.020.0062.71
19860.0710.040.20.010.020.060.250.191.730.390.0170.0062.59
19870.0610.030.190.020.020.080.220.171.420.320.0440.0142.06
19880.0850.070.220.020.020.070.330.262.080.470.0210.0073.18
19890.0560.050.310.030.020.080.230.181.520.340.0190.0062.03
19900.0530.040.220.020.020.090.190.151.540.350.0120.0041.87
19910.0670.050.150.020.020.060.280.221.790.40.0160.0052.48
19920.0570.040.240.020.020.10.210.161.670.380.0110.0042.07
19930.0570.050.20.020.020.090.190.151.530.350.0040.0011.98
19940.0520.060.170.010.020.070.20.161.50.340.0040.0011.88
19950.0470.060.250.020.020.110.220.171.610.360.0050.0011.72
19960.0420.060.230.020.020.110.190.151.510.340.0030.0011.51
19970.0510.070.170.020.020.080.230.181.530.350.0030.0011.93
19980.0440.060.130.020.020.060.220.171.370.310.0040.0011.6
19990.0370.060.210.020.020.10.150.111.190.270.0040.0011.27
20000.0450.070.160.020.020.080.220.171.50.340.0080.0031.64
20010.0410.070.140.020.020.060.210.161.380.310.0050.0021.64
20020.0340.070.120.050.020.050.30.241.210.270.0690.0221.41
20030.030.050.210.020.020.10.180.141.070.240.0210.0071.1
20040.0380.050.140.040.020.060.240.191.130.260.0080.0021.48
20050.030.050.150.010.020.070.170.130.890.20.0020.0011.14
20060.0310.060.270.020.030.140.180.140.940.210.0080.0031.35
20070.0330.060.150.010.020.070.20.151.070.240.0020.0011.28
20080.0330.070.190.020.020.10.190.151.10.250.0020.0011.23
20090.0240.070.180.020.020.090.150.120.980.220.0030.0010.94
20100.0170.060.290.020.020.140.140.10.730.170.0030.0010.58
20110.0140.050.150.010.010.070.170.130.730.170.0040.0010.59
20120.0180.080.210.090.020.120.240.190.960.220.0030.0010.68
20130.0160.060.120.020.020.060.240.190.790.180.0060.0020.56
20140.0140.070.180.010.020.10.210.160.760.170.0050.0020.52
20150.0140.040.140.010.010.070.20.160.740.170.0050.0020.37
20160.0110.070.250.010.020.120.220.170.860.190.0050.0020.4
20170.0080.060.170.010.020.080.240.180.720.160.0080.0030.34
20180.0070.050.150.010.020.070.170.130.610.140.0090.0030.25
PRECIPITATION 1984-2018 MONTHLY VOLUME-WEIGHTED MEAN CONCENTRATIONS (mg/L)
MONTHHCaClKMgNaNH4NH4-NNO3NO3-NPO4PO4-PSO4
10.030.040.280.010.020.140.090.071.090.250.0040.0010.85
20.0330.050.220.010.020.110.130.11.30.290.0070.0020.97
30.0320.070.260.020.020.130.180.141.310.30.0070.0021.14
40.0360.110.240.020.030.110.290.221.440.320.0110.0041.5
50.040.10.170.060.030.070.380.291.420.320.0220.0071.75
60.0480.070.130.030.020.040.340.261.440.320.0240.0081.96
70.0710.080.130.020.020.030.340.271.860.420.010.0032.74
80.0480.050.120.020.020.040.230.181.270.290.0060.0021.81
90.030.040.160.020.020.070.180.140.910.210.0120.0041.15
100.0230.040.210.030.020.10.140.110.760.170.0160.0050.8
110.0240.030.210.010.020.110.110.090.880.20.0040.0010.77
120.0250.030.210.010.020.10.10.070.930.210.0040.0010.77
ANNUAL MEAN CONCENTRATIONS (mg/L), CONDUCTIVITY (µmho) & DISCHARGE (m^3/s) - Wappinger Creek, Fern Glen (Site 2)
YEARHCaClKMgNaNH4NO3PO4SO4SiO2ConductivityQ
19850.01835.425.21.4108.40.013.260.062267.8295.
19860.01632.215.81.29.280.023.060.06616.46.62640.9
19870.01232.817.71.29.39.20.023.830.14916.75.52930.94
19880.01331.318.51.28.89.40.013.170.09216.15.32681.14
19890.01729.9181.38.49.60.043.050.0915.44.82590.92
19900.00931181.28.7100.023.330.07314.54.92661.43
19910.0083117.51.28.710.10.023.180.11616.35265
19920.00733.420.31.29.511.10.023.690.12213.94.3287
19930.01131.925.51.39.212.80.023.110.17916.242940.77
19940.01131.9241.18.612.60.011.920.06814.15.62841.07
19950.0133.224.41.28.813.70.021.970.1215.63.92961.26
19960.0130.425.10.97.913.60.011.020.01513.532741.22
19970.00834.627.11.39.615.30.012.940.07317.43.93130.64
19980.00937.229.81.29.916.60.013.520.14218.44.33340.7
19990.0093330.51.18.716.40.033.880.24918.85.83040.79
20000.00932.928.318.916.40.032.460.13413.95.63040.9
20010.00738.541.91.41123.60.045.710.34618.15.43820.4
20020.00837.945.61.31025.10.014.050.34818.94.83500.37
20030.00930.236.81.27.920.20.042.520.17913.15.83001.45
20040.00733.537.31.2921.40.022.490.20713.45.63340.71
20050.00931.845.91.28.927.30.034.480.29413.65.43661.18
20060.00730.42818.117.70.012.290.11912.25.12830.72
20070.00831.631.31.39.120.60.043.070.19113.15.42960.79
20080.00931.734.41.28.5210.012.740.193125.22910.78
20090.00933.435.11.28.821.10.022.210.14211.45.43181.09
20100.013239.11.49.224.30.024.330.26313.35.33350.67
20110.00830321.17.720.50.042.360.13810.86.42891.07
20120.00731.526.71.28.719.40.042.550.16310.562900.55
20130.00631.629.51.28.319.60.042.430.10210.15.22950.93
20140.00732.936.11.28.723.30.023.870.161105.13171.54
20150.0063548.41.39.628.90.034.050.21210.953440.74
20160.00735.850.51.41031.60.035.30.29912.73.13970.37
20170.00733.945.51.29.327.30.093.880.20711.26.23880.8
20180.00930381.17.924.40.082.470.1198.86.32990.97
ANNUAL MEAN CONCENTRATIONS (mg/L) & CONDUCTIVITY (µmho) - Wappinger Creek, Lowlands (Site 4)
YEARHCaClKMgNaNH4NO3PO4SO4SiO2Conductivity
19850.01236.225.41.28.711.70.033.660.09223.36.4305
19860.01933.220.51.28.610.40.023.220.04418.16.9276
19870.01234.121.81.18.711.50.023.580.09418.45.9293
19880.01432.923.21.28.312.20.013.420.094185.8283
19890.01631.423.41.37.912.50.043.40.04317.25.2280
19900.0132.323.71.28.1130.023.620.07816.55.7276
19910.00932.322.41.18.1130.023.390.05618.25.5285
19920.01234.624.11.18.814.10.023.270.05516.55.2305
19930.01733.931.21.28.515.80.022.630.02917.85.1316
19940.0153430.21.18.116.30.012.180.03216.16.1311
19950.01434.629.31.18.316.20.021.950.037173.4314
19960.01232.130.417.516.90.012.160.01215.25.2299
19970.00935.331.51.28.717.40.022.270.02317.64.8321
19980.0137.233.118.918.50.012.290.05318.24.7337
19990.0134.335.41819.20.022.320.118.65.7328
20000.00834.432.80.98.4190.052.430.08814.95.9324
20010.00639.142.71.19.723.10.033.250.12517.86377
20020.00838.748.81.19.225.90.012.570.15219.45.3359
20030.00831.842.11.17.423.20.032.590.11514.46.2321
20040.00834.342.21.18.324.20.012.510.14114.56.1353
20050.00932.347.61.17.927.50.023.410.12114.46369
20060.00831.432.40.97.620.60.012.170.07313.15.5300
20070.00932.333.91.18.322.20.033.040.16213.56303
20080.0132.438.11.17.923.40.012.40.1112.75.6300
20090.0134.439.41.18.224.40.022.040.08912.16334
20100.0132.740.81.28.225.20.022.530.10713.26330
20110.0130.9361.17.223.60.052.250.08511.46.8301
20120.00932.429.81.1821.90.042.080.08811.36.4299
20130.00932.133.81.17.522.70.052.180.058115.7307
20140.00934401.1825.60.023.110.08810.95.7325
20150.0093651.61.28.730.30.032.730.09611.55.4349
20160.00936.851.31.29.231.70.043.290.124133.4394
20170.0093550.41.18.529.20.092.60.111.86.3400
20180.01132.145.11.17.527.90.092.530.0749.96.8326
MONTHLY MEAN CONCENTRATIONS (mg/L), CONDUCTIVITY (µmho) & DISCHARGE (m^3/s) - Wappinger Creek, Fern Glen (Site 2) 1986-2018
MONTHHCaClKMgNaNH4NO3PO4SO4SiO2ConductivityQ
10.01130.829.41.18.316.80.033.90.09615.65.82951.93
20.01130.53218.217.90.053.650.09515.15.32951.62
30.01227.731.50.97.317.50.022.430.05613.83.72751.42
40.00729.728.70.97.816.20.021.540.054132.72821.06
50.00831.629.60.98.5170.031.930.12512.23.92920.71
60.00834.330.71.19.418.10.022.620.18611.34.93150.42
70.00835.233.71.39.920.40.023.430.26411.95.73330.4
80.00736.535.81.41022.10.024.810.37913.56.53510.33
90.00837.2341.61021.30.034.320.274156.13450.34
100.0083631.31.71018.90.023.450.20515.75.43340.82
110.013227.51.48.916.50.032.830.12515.35.42980.78
120.01130.6281.18.416.20.033.260.09515.962851.35
MONTHLY MEAN CONCENTRATIONS (mg/L) & CONDUCTIVITY (µmho) - Wappinger Creek, Lowlands (Site 4) 1985-2018
MONTHHCaClKMgNaNH4NO3PO4SO4SiO2Conductivity
10.01232.33517.8200.033.970.07116.96.3316
20.01132.238.917.821.70.043.890.06216.45.7320
30.01229.136.40.96.920.40.032.80.0415.24.4296
40.00831.333.90.97.319.20.031.910.03514.53.5302
50.0093333.40.97.919.50.032.120.08413.84.8308
60.0135.233.718.619.90.022.260.10812.95.6323
70.01135.834.61.18.920.70.032.340.11713.36.2330
80.013736.21.29.121.50.032.640.12914.36.7346
90.0137.7361.39.421.80.032.820.14815.66.6346
100.0136.934.51.49.220.50.022.190.08516.56340
110.01133.532.71.38.419.40.022.520.06316.36316
120.01231.933.71.17.819.50.033.340.06116.66.4304
ANNUAL WET DEPOSITION (kg/ha)
YEARHCaClKMgNaNH4-NNO3-NPO4SO4SO4-SNH4-N+NO3-NVolume_cm
19840.5251.132.130.940.40.9133.60.352217.16.5102.6
19850.720.72.240.170.230.732.24.80.202289.36.9102.9
19860.6780.41.910.130.170.561.83.70.162248.25.595.7
19870.6010.331.910.240.210.781.73.10.43206.84.899.1
19880.9390.782.420.20.230.772.85.10.22435127.9110.1
19890.6530.583.520.380.220.9123.90.216237.86115.9
19900.6940.582.840.230.221.121.94.50.1582486.4130
19910.6680.491.520.150.160.552.240.157248.16.1102.7
19920.5020.362.020.140.160.821.43.20.096185.94.688.2
19930.5650.521.950.170.210.881.53.40.043196.44.899.5
19940.60.641.970.160.210.851.83.90.044217.15.7116.1
19950.5060.632.650.240.251.161.83.90.048186.15.7108
19960.5990.843.20.220.291.492.14.80.047217.26.9142.9
19970.4880.671.640.170.190.741.73.30.03186.1596.2
19980.4340.581.260.180.20.561.730.043165.24.799.8
19990.3870.612.190.170.231.071.22.80.045134.44105.2
20000.5230.771.860.260.210.8523.90.092186.25.8116.5
20010.3270.521.10.120.130.461.32.40.036134.33.779.7
20020.3780.741.310.620.190.542.630.843155.25.6113.4
20030.410.712.750.290.311.391.93.30.277154.95.1139.7
20040.420.531.460.380.20.6822.70.074165.24.7111.1
20050.3690.651.960.160.250.961.72.70.028155.14.4137.1
20060.3090.632.60.150.271.331.42.10.076134.43.4119
20070.3970.711.750.180.20.871.82.90.026155.14.7120.7
20080.4450.922.60.210.291.2923.30.022175.55.3136.8
20090.2520.711.760.170.180.891.22.20.0299.23.13.4109.1
20100.1820.6130.170.261.441.11.70.0335.71.92.8109.3
20110.2360.862.370.230.241.142.12.70.069.63.24.8164.7
20120.1790.721.990.870.231.11.82.10.0326.52.23.997.8
20130.1970.661.370.220.190.752.32.10.0746.62.24.4121.7
20140.1590.751.950.140.211.071.71.80.0515.51.83.6109.8
20150.140.421.40.080.140.661.61.70.0523.61.23.2103.3
20160.1050.62.260.110.2151.081.61.80.0443.71.23.394
20170.110.732.20.180.2412.42.10.1014.31.44.5132.7
20180.1150.782.420.180.261.162.12.20.1514.11.44.4165.3
1988-2018 ANNUAL DRY DEPOSITION (kg/ha) & MEAN CONCENTRATIONS OF AEROSOLS & GASES FROM LOW-VOLUME FILTER PACKS (µg/m^3)
YearSO2-S (kg/ha)HNO3 (kg/ha)NO3-N (kg/ha)SO4-S (kg/ha)NH4-N (kg/ha)Total S (kg/ha)Total N (kg/ha)SO2 vd (cm/s)HNO3 vd (cm/s)Particulate vd (cm/s)SO2 (µg/m^3)HNO3 (µg/m^3)NO3 (µg/m^3)NH4 (µg/m^3)SO4 (µg/m^3)
19887.85.20.040.700.548.25.70.372.390.1215.33.10.561.95.7
19897.45.10.030.690.488.15.60.372.380.1214.73.00.411.65.4
19907.44.30.040.600.428.04.80.372.390.1214.82.60.631.54.9
19917.94.70.030.650.518.25.20.372.430.1214.83.00.411.95.6
19924.44.10.030.530.404.94.60.372.390.128.62.50.441.54.4
19934.24.50.030.490.354.74.90.372.390.128.22.70.391.23.9
19944.44.50.040.590.425.05.00.372.390.129.32.70.491.44.6
19954.00.030.470.334.20.372.380.122.30.441.13.7
19963.70.030.510.364.10.362.380.122.20.441.24.0
19973.43.40.030.430.323.83.70.362.360.117.72.00.421.23.5
19984.23.50.050.410.314.63.80.372.380.128.02.10.681.13.2
19993.73.20.030.420.324.13.50.362.380.127.22.00.491.13.2
20002.63.60.040.440.333.03.70.372.400.125.32.10.511.23.7
20013.83.60.030.500.344.03.80.372.370.127.92.30.441.34.5
20023.13.30.420.353.53.50.362.390.126.41.91.23.3
20032.93.90.343.20.372.390.126.32.53.0
20043.53.00.050.370.303.83.30.372.390.126.81.70.621.02.9
20053.62.90.040.440.304.03.30.372.390.126.81.70.571.03.5
20062.02.00.050.320.272.32.40.372.380.123.71.20.691.02.5
20072.41.80.030.350.272.82.10.372.390.124.71.00.511.02.8
20081.91.90.030.300.222.22.10.372.380.123.81.10.470.82.4
20091.41.70.040.240.181.71.90.362.380.122.91.00.570.61.9
20101.01.80.030.210.161.22.00.372.390.121.81.00.460.61.7
20110.81.80.040.220.181.02.00.372.390.121.81.10.580.61.8
20120.41.70.030.150.120.61.80.372.390.120.91.00.480.41.3
20130.31.40.030.160.130.41.60.372.380.120.80.80.510.51.3
20140.41.20.050.120.110.51.40.372.400.120.80.70.690.41.0
20150.51.50.050.130.100.71.60.372.380.121.00.90.610.41.1
20160.41.30.030.090.070.41.40.382.460.120.70.90.430.30.8
20170.21.20.040.090.070.31.40.372.390.120.40.80.540.30.8
20180.21.00.040.080.070.31.20.372.390.120.40.60.530.30.7
1988-2018 MONTHLY DRY DEPOSITION (kg/ha) & MEAN CONCENTRATIONS OF AEROSOLS & GASES FROM LOW-VOLUME FILTER PACKS (µg/m^3)
MonthSO2-S (kg/ha)HNO3 (kg/ha)NO3-N (kg/ha)SO4-S (kg/ha)NH4-N (kg/ha)Total S (kg/ha)Total N (kg/ha)SO2 vd (cm/s)HNO3 vd (cm/s)Particulate vd (cm/s)SO2 (µg/m^3)HNO3 (µg/m^3)NO3 (µg/m^3)NH4 (µg/m^3)SO4 (µg/m^3)
10.3910.1580.0050.0160.0130.3960.1740.252.010.0812.01.31.120.842.3
20.2810.2030.0060.0210.0160.3010.2210.262.330.118.61.60.970.812.4
30.2310.3010.0060.0300.0220.2600.3260.312.670.135.82.00.710.832.6
40.1780.3300.0040.0330.0240.2080.3450.402.980.163.62.00.450.792.5
50.2070.3720.0030.0420.0300.2480.4060.472.870.153.32.10.300.913.0
60.2790.3380.0020.0530.0380.3310.3800.492.620.144.42.30.211.354.4
70.2760.3240.0010.0580.0450.3190.3540.472.440.134.62.30.141.695.1
80.2700.2920.0010.0490.0340.3060.3170.442.310.124.62.10.171.334.5
90.1860.1990.0020.0270.0200.2120.2180.412.190.113.71.60.340.972.9
100.2150.1990.0030.0200.0160.2350.2130.352.220.104.71.50.490.732.2
110.1860.1120.0020.0100.0090.1960.1230.292.050.086.91.20.670.691.9
120.2830.1040.0030.0120.0100.2940.1140.241.860.079.31.00.870.752.1