Section 208 Plan Update
The 208 Plan Update focuses on nutrient impacts to the Cape’s estuaries, primarily caused by nitrogen in wastewater. The 208 Plan Update reflects a watershed-based approach, as watersheds, not town boundaries, define the jurisdiction of the problem. The approach developed through the Section 208 Plan Update looks at targeting specific watersheds with known water quality problems.
The Plan Update is the culmination 14 months of intensive work on the plan by Commission staff, consultants and 170 stakeholders from across the Cape. It’s also a continuation of years of Commission effort to address excessive nitrogen entering Cape Cod embayments, mainly from residential septic systems.
The Cape Cod Commission developed the WatershedMVP application for professionals, municipal officials and community members in order to assist in creating the most cost-effective and efficient solutions to Cape Cod’s wastewater problem. The application is an informational resource intended to provide regional estimates for planning purposes. The user can create and edit scenarios of any scale across Cape Cod using detailed, accurate data.
The Cape Cod Commission has developed a viewer designed to visualize GIS based layers depicting several regional datasets that can illustrate existing wastewater conditions and current wastewater planning. The viewer is designed to track and illustrate watershed management scenarios from watershedMVP. It can further be used as an analytical tool to help evaluate financial, environmental and social consequences of water quality policies on Cape Cod.
This website provides an interactive portal for examining the myriad of potential nutrient reduction, remediation and restoration technologies and approaches. This work is embodied in the Water Quality Technologies Matrix (Technologies Matrix) and then simplified based on the point of intervention, the scale of the technology or approach (site, neighborhood, or watershed) and whether it requires a collection system to remove waste from the property for disposal in another location. The Technologies Matrix includes the breadth of traditional approaches, from on-site (Title 5) systems to centralized treatment facilities, and a diverse array of non-traditional or alternative approaches, ranging from coastal habitat restoration to source-reducing toilets.
Water Quality Initiative
The Cape Cod Commission has been directed to update the 208 Plan in January of 2013. The Section 208 of the U.S. Clean Water Act was designed to propose implementable solutions for water quality problems from point (direct discharge to surface waters) and non-point (indirect discharge) sources within state-specified geographic regions, including Cape Cod, Massachusetts. This site is the epicenter of information and data the Cape Cod Commission is distributing in this effort.