May 2018 Nitrate Data In

We had sample collection at 100% of sites again this May. Thank you to all the dedicated members of the TRWA Volunteer Monitoring Team!

The results look similar to April and May of 2016 and 2017 (past data on website) beginning to show some marginally high nitrate values on the main stem of the Taunton and lower Three Mile Rivers. Town River in Bridgewater spiked early this year to 0.9 mg/l (over twice our 0.4 mg/l target). In past years the Town River didn’t start to spike to high values until June or July. The Matfield River was high last month but low in May, We don’t know if the Brockton Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) started to experiment with better nitrogen removal in May.

We will continue to watch to see if nitrogen levels spike throughout the watershed from June/July to November as we have seen the past few years once river flow is lower. TRWA is the only one monitoring in the upper Taunton watershed on a regular basis. This monitoring is very important to understanding what is happening in the watershed and documenting the need for better nitrogen removal at WWTPs which dominate summer river flow and better stormwater control to reduce pollution and conserve groundwater for river base flow augmentation.

A piece of good news is despite high rainfall and river flows the fecal coliform levels on the days we tested were low both in April and May. This is good for recreation on the river so please check out our June 9 and 10 canoe/kayak trips on the website or our Facebook page

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