State Matches Funds With Barnstable County for Water Quality Monitoring Program

barnstable county symbolBARNSTABLE – The state has given Barnstable County $250,000 in matching funds to expand its marine water quality monitoring to include all estuaries and near shore stations.

Under the terms of the grant, the county will use $250,000 of its own funds and $250,000 from the state to expand its monitoring program to include not just the existing ongoing monitoring of water quality at selected stations in Nantucket Sound, but to incorporate the monitoring of Buzzards Bay and Cape Cod Bay as well.

“Cape Cod is confronting its long neglected wastewater problem that is responsible for degrading its iconic bays and estuaries,” said Cape Cod Water Protection Collaborative Chairman Larry Ballantine. “After much public discussion, the Cape is committed to implementing a new approach to managing its wastewater problems.”

The $500,000 in annual monitoring funds will test all Cape waters for total nitrogen, dissolved oxygen, turbidity, pH, temperature, nitrate/nitrite, ammonia, ortho-phosphate, total phosphorus, chlorophyll and salinity.

With the information, the county can build the database necessary to assess progress and understand remaining water quality challenges, according to county officials.

“A strong monitoring program will ensure that towns know exactly how much progress they are making toward achieving water quality goals,” said Collaborative Executive Director Andrew Gottlieb.

“This investment will help communities save money and is a critical endorsement of the work being done here on the Cape.”

The Collaborative will issue a request for proposals to solicit bids on the expanded monitoring program, which will start in April 2016.
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