TOWN OF BERLIN, MARYLAND
Office of the Mayor
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
For Information Contact:
Town Administrator Laura Allen
Berlin Falls Park Pond Sampling Scheduled
Town working with volunteer scientists from the Thriving Earth Exchange
(March 21, 2017) — The first step in remediating Berlin Falls Park starts on Monday with sampling of the ponds, announced Mayor Gee Williams.
“We are excited to be at this stage in the development of this unique asset,” said Mayor Williams. “The ponds are a focal point of the property. This process will enable us to determine the best way to use them,” he added.
“We’ve partnered with volunteer scientists from the Thriving Earth Exchange to determine the types of bacteria present in the sediment. In addition, we have a contract with EA Engineering, Science and Technology to perform a geotechnical analysis of the ponds to enable us to determine the best approach to remediation and how much it will cost,” stated Town Administrator Laura Allen.
The Thriving Earth Exchange (TEX) is an organization that partners earth and space scientists with community leaders to use a combination of science and local knowledge to solve challenges related to natural hazards, natural resources, and climate change.
Berlin reached out to the TEX last year for assistance with the Park. “We couldn’t resist the opportunity to get free, expert technical advice for our Town,” said Town Administrator Laura Allen. “We’ve been working with Dr. Ellen Silbergeld, a professor of environmental health science at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Her research centers around environmental issues related to the poultry industry in Delmarva. Recently, Dr. Silbergeld reached out to Dr. Jennifer Nyland, Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Salisbury University for assistance with the sampling process,” she added.
“EA will handle most of the sampling process, removing sediment from the ponds,” stated Ms. Allen. Several samples will be extracted specifically for bacterial analysis using a method outlined by Dr. Silbergeld. Our wastewater treatment labs will be used for some of the testing as well,” she added.
“A solid plan and cost estimate for the remediation work will put us in a good position to compete for grant funding,” stated Mayor Williams. “The Thriving Earth Exchange is a significant partner in this effort. I want to thank the scientific community for having the foresight to put this program in place,” he added.
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