"The cleanup of Boston Harbor is incomplete
Largely unknown to the public, raw sewage is still dumped into the Mystic and Charles rivers, which empty directly into the harbor."
"The cleanup of Boston Harbor is considered one of the great environmental success stories of our time — and deservedly so. It has helped transform the quality of life in the metro Boston area as residents and businesses live, work, and play near the newly cleaned up harbor and the rivers that feed into it.
But sadly, and largely unknown to the public, raw sewage is still dumped into the Mystic and Charles rivers that empty right into the harbor. Depending on the volume of rainfall and snowmelt, up to 500 million gallons of sewage mixed with storm water are discharged into the harbor via the two rivers every year.
These discharges flow from old underground pipe networks known as combined sewer systems, engineering relics that were designed to collect rainwater runoff, domestic sewage, and industrial wastewater in the same pipe leading to a treatment plant. But during periods of heavy rainfall or snowmelt, the wastewater volume can exceed the pipe’s capacity, causing a combined sewer overflow, or CSO, that dumps the polluted contents directly into the rivers."
- The Charles River Watershed Association is working on river clean up as well. Visit the Storymap "A River Interrupted" here -> https://storymaps.arcgis.com/stories/62917edcb76c4e10868cbb7a79638282
- The Town of Franklin (ToF) is also involved and recently passed the storm water utility fee (starting in Jan 2023) to help fund that effort and relieve pressure from the operating budget. For more about storm water visit the ToF page -> https://www.franklinma.gov/stormwater-division
|SUZANNE KREITER/GLOBE STAFF|