May Monitoring Results Are Available

Our most recent sampling summary spreadsheets showing the results for April and May 2023 are posted on the website and can be reached through the Water Quality Monitoring Tab or this link. Despite relatively high spring stream flow (similar to last month) we found elevated nitrate results downstream of the Brockton wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) in the Matfield River and downstream in the Taunton River as far as Cherry St. in Bridgewater. Total Phosphorus (TP) measured was below the 0.100 mg/l in-stream target used by EPA in permit limit development but somewhat elevated in the 0.06 to 0.08 mg/l range downstream of the Brockton, Bridgewater and Taunton WWTPs. TP levels of 0.075 and .052 mg/l were measured in the Taunton River in Raynham at Church St. and the Forge River in Raynham possibly from stormwater runoff from paved parking lots and roadways in the area. This is an indication of a potential need for better stormwater management. Bacteria levels (enterococci) were all in compliance with state standards except the small Chuckamuckett Brook which flows out of Berkley near the Berkley / Dighton Bridge. We often find high nitrate and bacteria levels in this brook consistent with agricultural runoff.

As stream flow decreases this summer and temperatures rise we will be looking to see how this affects water quality. We will also be looking to see how recent work on upgrades at the Brockton and Bridgewater WWTPs affect water quality. Middleborough and the Mansfield/Foxboro/Norton Regional WWTPs completed upgrades in 2019. Both TRWA and our partners at Save The Bay in RI have been encouraging EPA Region 1 in Boston to reissue the last two WWTP permits requiring nitrogen removal upgrades Somerset and Fall River this year so that all seven major WWTPs in the watershed will have adequate wastewater treatment someday.


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