In The News
The Mashpee Enterprise: APCC: Conditions Worsen For Cape Cod’s Saltwater Embayments, Freshwater Ponds
Nutrient pollution has long degraded Cape Cod’s bays and estuaries, but data analyzed by the Association to Preserve Cape Cod suggests the Cape’s freshwater ponds also might be nearing a state of crisis.
In the second annual “State of the Waters” report released on Monday, October 26, the APCC, an environmental nonprofit group, determined that 38 of 48 saltwater embayments had “unacceptable” water quality—an increase from last year’s numbers.
In early August, carpenter Michael Forgione told his mother that he was heading out to go crabbing in the brackish waters of Chilmark Pond on Martha’s Vineyard. Carol Forgione, a 72-year-old nurse practitioner, wished him a good catch. “This is the pond,” she said on a recent visit. “This is the entrance that he went into. And then the public entrance is just down the road.”
Trees growing on up to 220 acres would be clear-cut for the $9.7 million project. Eight firing lanes would allow soldiers to train on a variety of weapons systems, including M249 automatic weapons and M240B machine guns. Copper bullets would be used.
JOINT BASE CAPE COD — Residents and environmental groups are calling on the Massachusetts National Guard to abandon its proposal for an eight-lane machine gun range at Camp Edwards, or to at least slow down the process so the public can get more information and offer further input. The comment period on the Guard’s environmental assessment of the proposed machine gun range and its draft finding of no significant impact ended Sept. 8.
The Association to Preserve Cape Cod has submitted written comments to the Massachusetts Army National Guard calling for a reevaluation of the plan to construct a machine gun range on the area of Joint Base Cape Cod designated as the Upper Cape Water Supply Reserve.
BOSTON — The Conservation Law Foundation is once again looking to the federal courts to protect Cape Cod waters from toxic nitrogen pollution. The environmental advocacy organization says it intends to sue the town of Barnstable and Willowbend Country Club in Mashpee for violating the federal Clean Water Act by discharging and adding pollutants into Lewis Bay and Popponesset Bay.
HYANNIS — Add drought to COVID-19, sharks and a faltering economy on the list of daunting issues affecting Cape Cod this summer. The Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs declared the Cape to be under Level 1 mild drought conditions last month. A Level 1 drought condition is declared when rainfall has been below normal for between one and two months, river and stream flows decline, fire danger is elevated and gardens begin to wilt.
With summer well underway, higher temperatures coupled with nutrient overload in kettle ponds and lakes brings the dangerous return of cyanobacteria blooms, also known as blue-green algae. As of Tuesday, Aug. 4, the Association to Preserve Cape Cod (APCC) reported 10 of the ponds it monitors as having “high” levels of cyanobacteria and two water sources with “moderate” levels. None of those were on the Outer Cape.
Boston Globe: As temperatures rise, a ‘nightmare’ of toxic algae plagues the hidden gems of Cape Cod
BARNSTABLE — Fifteen years ago, when Sandra Bolton and her husband bought their three-bedroom Cape overlooking the serene waters of Shubael Pond, their view was like “heaven on Earth,” she said. Few summer days passed when they didn’t take a dip.
But in recent years they began to notice a guacamole-colored scum marring the previously clear waters. Last summer, just as temperatures were increasing and the pond beckoned, local officials banned swimming there after finding toxic algae blooms that can be harmful if ingested, inhaled, or touched.
It has been a busy season so far for APCC’s Cyanobacteria Monitoring Program.
With pond temperatures rising quickly in the transition from spring to summer, Association to Preserve Cape Cod this week confirmed the emergence of toxic cyanobacteria scums in five ponds across the Cape: Walkers and Cliff ponds in Brewster, Mares and Deep ponds in Falmouth, and Long Pond in Marstons Mills.
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We created an “In The News” archive page with APCC news mentions prior to 2019.