Melting snow from last week's winter storm caused water systems in the Capital District, the area around the city of Albany, to overflow, leading to a stream of untreated wastewater gushing into the Hudson River for more than an hour.
The spill came from the "Big C" pipe, which is owned and operated by the city of Albany. The Environmental Protection Agency has criticized the city for the pipe, which overflows after heavy rainfall and snowfall.
Overflows from the pipe cause an estimated 547 million gallons of sewage and rainwater to flow into the Hudson every year. This, along with an additional 653 million gallons from the other pipelines, makes the section of the Hudson around Albany the most sewage-tainted part of the 315-mile river.
Heavy rains sent 400,000 gallons of sewage into the Hudson in November 2016, following a spill to the tune of 900,000 gallons in June. A broken pipe sent an additional 500,000 gallons into the river in July.
"Floatable" debris such as baby wipes have been spotted on the surface of the water.