Save the Lake/Save the Pond

Save the Lake - Save the Pond

If you love Montauk, you’re one of us! Join Us

What is CCOM’s Save the Lake – Save the Pond Program?

Water is the lifeblood of Montauk.  It defines who we are as a community. Save the Lake – Save the Pond is a step-by-step program that brings together residential and commercial property owners and the Town of East Hampton to clean up Lake Montauk and Fort Pond

The natural systems that filter and clean Lake Montauk and Fort Pond are overwhelmed. New York State has designated Lake Montauk as an imperiled water body, resulting in the closure of once-thriving shellfish beds and the shuttering of the public beach at South Lake. Fort Pond is similarly unsafe for swimming for much of the summer season.

Save the Lake – Save the Pond’s residential and commercial program is designed to specifically reduce or eliminate nitrogen, the most serious threat to Montauk’s water.


Become a steward and be one of over 1,800 residents in the Fort Pond and Lake Montauk watershed taking action to improve water quality. Regardless of where you live, it’s only a matter of time before pollution from your property enters the waters around us. Actions save money over time, increase property value, reduce public health risks and clean the water. It’s a win-win.

  • Septic system inspections repair or upgrade.
  • Slow, store, and filter stormwater
  • Toxin-free landscaping


Commercial properties in the Lake Montauk and Fort Pond area vary greatly and many see heavy use in the busy summer months. Businesses have a unique opportunity to educate their patrons about water quality issues, fostering a sense of stewardship for all visitors and residents of Montauk. Montauk’s waters are the cornerstone of our resort economy. Actions that improve water quality are good business.

  • Ensure septic systems are functioning properly; repair or upgrade as needed
  • Share information about water quality and sensitive marine habitats with guests and visitors
  • Follow marina best practices: no discharge of boat waste, low wake
  • Slow, store, and filter stormwater
  • Practice toxin-free landscaping
  • Stop throwing out pollutants


Now, more than ever, is the time for water quality reform. East Hampton Town recognizes the environmental, social and economic benefits of clean water. Actions the town takes now will support the efforts taken by residential and commercial property owners. The town is positioned to take actions that will include cost reductions for replacing the aging septic systems of Montauk, the largest contributors to local water pollution.

  • Advocate for use of Community Preservation Funds for water quality improvements
  • Adopt a regular water testing program for Lake Montauk and Fort Pond
  • Adopt greater water quality protections for properties in the town’s Harbor Protection Overlay District
  • Incentivize periodic septic inspections
  • Hire a town septic inspector
  • Ensure compliance with town’s water quality protection codes



Are our waters contaminated or clean? Click here for test results!