Topics: Groundwater protection

ORLEANS — Four oars produce more power than one. That's the argument that the Pleasant Bay Alliance is making to its constituent towns of Brewster, Chatham, Harwich, and Orleans about pulling together to help the state develop a first-time-ever watershed permit for the town. The first step is to make sure the towns are proceeding in sync. To do that, the Alliance spent the last year-plus preparing a Pleasant...

CHATHAM — The board of selectmen voted unanimously Tuesday to pitch in $7,500 to support the legal battle to stop Eversource from spraying herbicides on power line right-of-ways on the Cape. The board also voted to send a letter to the Barnstable county commissioners urging them to support the effort. The vote came several weeks after selectmen opted to send a letter to the Massachusetts Department of Agricu...

CHATHAM — Though they weren't ready to sign a check, selectmen last week gladly signed a letter once again opposing the use of pesticides to control vegetation along Eversource power line rights-of-way. The campaign is being organized by the group Protect Our Cape Cod Aquifer (POCCA), which is also asking Cape towns to contribute to a legal fund. Laura Kelley, president of POCCA, is visiting towns around the C...

ORLEANS — At a moment when towns such as Chatham and Harwich are taking a regional approach to cleaning their waters, the Nauset Regional School Committee voted unanimously against allowing Orleans to explore discharging treated wastewater at the middle school recreation fields owned jointly by Brewster, Eastham, Orleans, and Wellfleet. The town, through its consultant AECOM, had made the request to investig...

Task Force Has Lots To Say About Orleans Ponds

By: Ed Maroney

ORLEANS — It was a cold day for a walking tour of the town's freshwater ponds, but members of the marine and fresh water quality task force made the effort Jan. 9 without mittens and parkas. Led by chair Carolyn Kennedy, they walked around tables covered with sheets of water quality statistics at town hall. With some of the numbers collected by volunteers as far back as 2000, the data provided a picture ove...

Nauset Middle School Eyed As Backup Discharge Site

By: Ed Maroney

ORLEANS — The town will ask the Nauset Regional School District to allow testing at the middle school to see whether its running track area can serve as a backup site for discharge of effluent – treated wastewater – from a proposed treatment plant for a downtown sewer system. Meeting Dec. 14 with AECOM staff and town consultant Mike Domenica, the board reviewed a list of nine sites ranging from the Overland ...

ORLEANS — Voters at a special town meeting Monday night approved a $3.22M article to advance the town's efforts to protect water quality. The article reserves around $2.5 million for continued planning and engineering, and about $750,000 for implementing adaptive management measures and program management. The initiative passed on a 369 to 98 secret ballot vote, now goes before voters as a Proposition 2 ½ debt...

West Harwich Plume Conditions Remain A Concern

By: William F. Galvin

WEST HARWICH — Residents and town officials got a thorough presentation Monday night on the plume that has moved slowly from Dennisport, through West Harwich to the Herring River over nearly the past 20 years. While several studies have been done, there still remains concern about the status and impact from the plume, which initially showed tetrachloroethylene levels 1,000 times beyond limits along Smith Stree...

HARWICH — The Cape Cod Commission subcommittee sitting on the development of regional impact application for the Harwich Comprehensive Wastewater Management Plan unanimously voted on Thursday to recommend adoption of the plan to the full commission. The full commission is scheduled to act on the recommendation in a hearing on Aug.18 in Barnstable. Thursday's hearing was the second time in three months the subc...

CHATHAM — In less than a century, rising sea levels could cause localized basement flooding, septic system failures, roadway deterioration and problems with underground utilities. That's the prediction of a U.S. Geological Survey study carried out in cooperation with regional and state experts. Released last week, the study used sophisticated computer models to predict the effects on the Cape's freshwater aqui...

With Excavations, Bank Street Bogs Will Control Nitrogen

By: William F. Galvin Location: Bank Street Bogs

HARWICH — Town officials have begun examining the draft final report on the nitrogen attenuation potential in Cold Brook in the Bank Street Bogs. The evaluation assesses the waterway's ability to naturally absorb nitrogen as a way to improve water quality and reduce the need for costly sewer construction. The study was prepared by the Coastal Systems Group from the School for Marine Science and Technology at U...

CHATHAM — In an effort to avoid a water supply shortage this summer, selectmen have declared a state of water supply conservation, effective June 15. Starting then, and continuing through Sept.15, there will be voluntary restrictions on lawn watering and other non-essential water consumption. If the voluntary steps don't adequately control water use in town, selectmen will consider more stringent measures, pos...

Much to the relief of motorists, the new bridge over Muddy Creek opened to traffic last Friday afternoon, bringing to fruition an important water quality project. On the surface, the new bridge appears to be a roadway improvement, but it was installed to provide better tidal flushing between Muddy Creek and Pleasant Bay. The new $6.5 million bridge includes a sidewalk for pedestrians and, for the first time in de...