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April 22, 2013


Chris Gilbride/ Ted Timbers (718) 595-6600

City Department of Environmental Protection Celebrates Earth Day by Joining With Trout Unlimited and New York City Students to Release Trout Into Watershed Streams

More Than 1500 Students from New York City and the Upstate Watersheds Will Participate in the Environmental Awareness Program

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today joined with Trout Unlimited and 22 students from the Studio School in New York City to release nearly 50 juvenile brown trout into the Cross River where it passes through the Ward Pound Ridge Reservation in Westchester County. Through the Trout in the Classroom program, more than 1500 students from schools in New York City and the upstate watersheds raise the trout from eggs and will release them into watershed streams over the next two months. The Cross River feeds into the Cross River Reservoir, part of New York City’s Croton Watershed. City and State environmental officials also taught the students about the water quality of the streams and forest ecology.

“More than 1500 students have raised these trout in their classrooms since October and Earth Day is a perfect time to release them into the wild,” said DEP Deputy Commissioner for Water Supply Paul Rush. “The Trout in the Classroom program raises environmental awareness about our shared resources in students from New York City and upstate counties and helps build an appreciation for the natural environment that is home to our world class drinking water.”

“Through the Trout in the Classroom program we have developed a longstanding partnership with DEP,” said Trout Unlimited’s Youth Education Director Franklin Tate. “By educating students, both in New York City and the upstate counties, about the connection between water quality and healthy fish we are helping to promote the next generation of environmental stewards.”

DEP and Trout Unlimited have partnered to bring the Trout in the Classroom program to schools in New York City and the upstate watersheds since 2002 and it serves as a model for similar programs across the country. During that time the number of classes participating in the New York program has grown from four to over 150. While raising the trout in their classrooms students learn that they are sensitive to changes in water quality and serve as an important indicator species. The students monitor water temperature, clarity, dissolved oxygen, ammonia, and PH while the trout are raised in tanks. They also learn that trout play an important role in the water ecology of the streams that feed New York City’s water supply. To learn more about Trout in the Classroom in New York City and the New York City Watersheds, sponsor a school, get a school involved, or volunteer at the next Trout Release Field Day contact Lilli Genovesi at

DEP manages New York City’s water supply, which today provides more than one billion gallons of water each day to more than nine million residents, including eight million in New York City and one million in upstate counties. The water is delivered from a watershed that extends more than 125 miles from the city, comprising 19 reservoirs and three controlled lakes. Approximately 7,000 miles of water mains, tunnels and aqueducts bring water to homes and businesses throughout the five boroughs, and 7,500 miles of sewer lines and 96 pump stations take wastewater to 14 in-city treatment plants. DEP has nearly 6,000 employees, including almost 1,000 in the upstate watershed. In addition, DEP has a robust capital program, with a planned $14 billion in investments over the next 10 years that will create up to 3,000 construction-related jobs per year. This capital program is responsible for critical projects like City Water Tunnel No. 3; the Staten Island Bluebelt program, an ecologically sound and cost-effective stormwater management system; the city’s Watershed Protection Program, which protects sensitive lands upstate near the city’s reservoirs in order to maintain their high water quality; and the installation of more than 820,000 Automated Meter Reading devices, which will allow customers to track their daily water use, more easily manage their accounts and be alerted to potential leaks on their properties. For more information, visit, like us on Facebook at, or follow us on Twitter at

More Information

NYC Department of Environmental Protection
Public Affairs

59-17 Junction Boulevard
19th Floor
Flushing, NY 11373

(718) 595-6600