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By adamg - 5/21/23 - 10:12 am

The Boston Public Health Commission reports that some raw sewage got into the inner harbor early this morning through combined sewer outflow pipes in East Boston and the South End: Read more.

By adamg - 12/30/22 - 10:11 am
Latest Covid-19 numbers for the northern half of the MWRA district

The latest numbers from the MWRA's Deer Island treatment plant are out and they're not looking good.

By adamg - 11/18/22 - 4:41 pm

Cambridge Day reports Cambridge will be turning back to its reservoir off Rte. 128 now that it has carbon filters in place to keep most of those nasty PFAS chemicals out of the mains. Cambridge switched to MWRA water, which comes from the crystal-clear Quabbin in August because of elevated levels of the chemicals.

By adamg - 10/14/22 - 11:00 am
CSO warning

CSO warning from BPHC.

The Boston Public Health Commission reports all the rain has overloaded local sewer mains, to the point that one MWRA outflow pipe, upstream of the North Washington Street Bridge, started pouring sewage-laden water into the inner harbor at 1:01 a.m, "creating a potential public health risk." Read more.

By adamg - 8/28/22 - 3:03 pm

Cambridge Day reports Cambridge will be shutting off the water from its reservoir out by 128 on Tuesday for several months because it could take that long to acquire and install better filters to reduce what has become a rising amount of nasty PFAS in Cambridge's supply. In contrast, MWRA water, which Bostonians and other greater-Boston-area residents drink, has shown little to no PFAS.

By adamg - 4/27/22 - 2:56 pm

The Conservation Law Foundation today sued the MWRA, charging its not even slapping the wrist out of eastern Massachusetts industrial plants that dump chemicals and metals into the sewers, which then pass through the Deer Island treatment plant - ending up either in Massachusetts Bay or the fertilizer that the agency sell to local golf clubs, landscapers and garden centers. Read more.

By adamg - 4/5/22 - 10:27 am
Water pouring out of Bellevue Hill water tower

Soggy door on Bellevue Hill. Photo by Keith Davison.

Water began pouring out of the older of two water tanks atop Bellevue Hill in West Roxbury on Sunday, but the MWRA says it was a minor mishap, not something more serious. A spokesperson says: Read more.

By adamg - 6/23/21 - 12:05 pm

The American Water Works Association announces that a panel of people who know from municipal drinking water rated MWRA water the "best of the best" in an annual competition. Read more.

By adamg - 1/14/21 - 3:48 pm
Some coronavirus numbers from the Deer Island treatment plant

Latest readings from the MWRA's southern sewer system.

The latest Covid-19 RNA readings from the MWRA's Deer Island treatment plant are out and not looking good: After a short stretch in late December where it looked like they were flattening or even coming down, they're once again on a near vertical rise, possibly foretelling yet another spike in Boston Covid-19 numbers. Read more.

By adamg - 12/8/20 - 4:29 pm
Covid-19 sampling from MWRA sewage shows mind-numbing surge

The different colors represent the MWRA's two main greater-Boston sewer systems.

The MWRA's Covid-19 testing at Deer Island is a predictor: It detects viral samples excreted by Boston-area toilet users (i.e., all of us), including by people who don't yet realize they're infected. The chart updated yesterday shows we'll soon be way, way, way past the numbers seen in the spring. The vaccines can't get here soon enough, but in the meantime, could more than the relatively modest rollbacks announced by the governor today be coming?

By adamg - 12/3/20 - 1:55 pm
Covid-19 incidence in Boston sewage: The curve is now vertical

The latest chart of Covid-19 prevalence in sewage flowing through the Deer Island treatment plant shows numbers basically going vertical through Dec. 1 - and far exceeding the numbers reported just before and during the spring Covid-19 surge. Read more.

By adamg - 10/21/20 - 6:37 pm
MWRA sewage samples show burst in Covid-19 activity

Thrice-weekly samples taken at the MWRA's Deer Island sewage-treatment plant are showing a spike in Covid-19 RNA, which follows increases in Covid-19 rates in Massachusetts and Boston and could signal further increases as the people excreting the RNA spread their virus to people they come into contact with. Read more.

By adamg - 4/29/19 - 9:40 am
Digester tanks at Deer Island

Adam Balsam gives us a closeup nighttime view of the "digester" tanks at Deer Island, where zillions of bacteria contentedly spend their days munching human sewage.

Copyright Adam Balsam. Posted in the Universal Hub pool on Flickr.

By adamg - 4/19/19 - 4:00 pm

The Boston Fire Department reports a 55-gallon drum full of unspecified hazardous waste materials at the MWRA treatment plant became "over pressurized."

We sent in an entry team under air in level B suits to release the pressure from the drum. There were no exposures or spills . There are no injuries to report. We evacuated the building as a precaution.

By adamg - 1/15/19 - 6:12 pm

One thing the Trump shutdown didn't end was a plan by the Army Corps of Engineers to set off explosives at the bottom of Boston Harbor tomorrow to deepen a shipping channel. It took a judge to do that. Read more.

By adamg - 5/11/18 - 9:18 am
Boat being lifted into the Chestnut Hill Reservoir

Rory Nolan watched boats being lifted into the Chestnut Hill Reservoir this morning so crews can try to fight the dreaded cyanobacteria, a.k.a. blue-green algae, which is toxic to people and dogs.

By adamg - 3/28/18 - 2:02 pm

Deadly Sins is a WGBH show that highlights storytellers. This week's episode features an account by Ashley Rose, who grew up in Roslindale, at least until her Delford Street house was flooded by raw sewage from a busted sewer main and then condemned, in 1996. Her story starts at about 9:26.

Residents spent nine years battling the MWRA and the BWSC over what became known as Boston's Love Canal.

By adamg - 1/1/18 - 8:21 pm
Geyser on Huntington Avenue

Jessica Feldish got some video of an MWRA water main turned geyser on Huntington Avenue outbound, at the Brookline line just past where it goes under the Jamaicaway. Needless to say, avoid the area.

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