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Boston Harbor and Massachusetts Bay
Massachusetts Water Resources Authority

Massachusetts Bay

Since 1992, the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority has monitored the Bay's water quality as part of its carefully designed Ambient Monitoring Program.  MWRA discharges treated sewage effluent through a 9.5-mile outfall into Massachusetts Bay. Monitoring results have shown that while MWRA's effluent quality has improved, animal communities in the Bay continue to thrive. Images from this outfall reflect a healthy, vibrant ecosystem.

Images from the outfall in Massachusetts Bay

Monitoring has enabled MWRA to better understand the natural variability in the Bay's water quality. Data has shown that the water near the outfall and throughout the bays is heavily influence by river inflows, weather, and other factors. At stations mostly near the outfall, studies focus on the effluent, water column, sea floor, and fish and shellfish. There are also monitoring stations as far out as Cape Cod Bay.

Latest bay bacteria data

MONITORING RESULTS

The annual Outfall Monitoring Overview contains monitoring data from Massachusetts Bay.

OUTFALL MONITORING OVERVIEWS 
2015 2014 2013 2012-II 2012-I 2011 2010
2009 2008-II 2008-I 2007-II 2007-I 2006 2005
2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 1998
1997 1996 1995 1994      

Over the years, monitoring has revealed that:


BAY WATER QUALITY DATA
Bay water quality is continually measured using a buoy off Cape Ann run by the Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal and Ocean Observing Systems (NERACOOS).



See buoy data on NERACOOS website.



Photograph of data collection buoy in 
			  Massachusetts Bay