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Mashpee Watershed Nitrogen Management Plan

Welcome to the Town of Mashpee’s Watershed Nitrogen Management Plan (WNMP) website.  As a community, we treasure Mashpee’s beautiful coastal ponds and estuaries, yet we are responsible for their poor water quality.  Excess nutrientsnitrogen , in particular – come from septic systems and wastewater treatment plants, surface runoff after rain storms or snow melt, lawn fertilizer, stormwater drainage system discharges, and other sources.  Nitrogen is present in the environment naturally; however, in excess, it is considered a pollutant. 

In response to long-standing concerns regarding nitrogen, Mashpee initiated the WNMP in 1999.  The project will provide an environmentally and economically sound plan for nitrogen reduction and wastewater treatment.  It will recommend areas appropriate for discharging treated wastewater into the ground.  The project will culminate in a recommended plan to reduce the Town’s nitrogen contributions - and those of its neighbors in the Popponesset Bay and Waquoit Bay watersheds - to coastal waters and to evaluate options for restoring these wonderful resources.  By proactively addressing nutrient issues on its own, the Town hopes to avoid regulatory enforcement actions by state or county agencies or the courts.  

To learn more about the problem with nutrients and how you both contribute to it and can be part of the solution, please visit the What's the Problem page.  Links are provided throughout the site to the Documents & Resources page where you can find definitions of commonly used words and acronyms.  

We hope you find this website helpful and look forward to your continued participation in the Town’s planning process. 



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