The State of New Jersey’s Governor’s Office and Department of Environmental Protection updated local officials and groups, including the Lake Hopatcong Foundation and Lake Hopatcong Commission, on July 2, 2019 about the current conditions related to the harmful algal bloom on Lake Hopatcong. In summary:
- The state is “still holding firm on the advisory” against swimming or water sports that involve physically touching the lake water, because of the continued presence of algae, but note that conditions are “somewhat improved.”
- Officials are waiting for the results of in-water sampling analysis before making any changes. They are taking samples lake-wide today (Tuesday) and more tomorrow (Wednesday), and will conduct their next aerial test tomorrow morning. When they have the results, they say the data should tell a better story about trends and indicate whether the advisory will be lifted for any part of the lake or the lake as a whole.
- The state reiterates that this is an “advisory as to bodily contact [with the water in Lake Hopatcong], and not a closure of the lake.” There is no advisory against recreational boating at this time, and Hopatcong State Park remains open to visitors, but no swimming is permitted there. As for being near the water, the officials said they “do not believe that inhalation exposure would be a concern given the levels found in the lake at this time.”
- The N.J. Department of Environmental Protection will have a “significant presence” at the Lake Hopatcong Commission meeting on Monday, July 8, 2019. Dr. Fred Lubnow of Princeton Hydro LLC will also be at that meeting to give a presentation to the public. Location is currently scheduled for the Jefferson Township Board of Education building, but will possibly move to a larger venue. More details to come.
We will continue to share information with the public as we receive it. In the meantime, stay safe.