Press Release Whitewashes MWRA’s Failure to Protect the Alewife Brook

The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority, Cambridge, and Somerville have done it again, issuing a new press release about “progress” made in the Alewife Brook through their Sewage Pollution Control Plan. There’s been no progress for the Alewife! The untreated sewage pollution in the Alewife Brook has gotten worse, not better. And unless MWRA increases theContinue reading “Press Release Whitewashes MWRA’s Failure to Protect the Alewife Brook”

State Funding Requests Filed for Alewife Brook

Cambridge, Somerville, and the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority dump hazardous untreated sewage into the flood-prone Alewife Brook. Our federal and state governments have the authority to stop this dumping of pollution, yet they have allowed it to continue for decades. The brook is owned by the state*, so we need the state to work withContinue reading “State Funding Requests Filed for Alewife Brook”

“Typical Year” CSO Modeling Fails for Alewife Brook

Please join us 6 pm on Thursday night, 12/15/22, at the Alewife Sewage Pollution Planning Meeting #2 by registering here. At this meeting, Cambridge, Somerville, and the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority will talk about the new Future “Typical Year” sewage pollution modeling which will be used for new sewer system infrastructure planning and future performanceContinue reading ““Typical Year” CSO Modeling Fails for Alewife Brook”

Speak out! Email Your City Now.

If you are not sure you can attend the Second Public Sewage Pollution Meeting on December 15, please send an email to City Hall and to the department heads at Cambridge DPW and Somerville DPW. Your voice needs to be heard and your city wants to hear from you. Click Here to Email Your City!Continue reading “Speak out! Email Your City Now.”

Your Voice Matters! Sewage Pollution Meeting #2

Alewife Sewage Pollution Control Public Meeting #2Thursday, December 15th at 6 pmZoom REGISTER HERE Please. We really need you to come to this important meeting.The EPA and Mass DEP are listening! Your voice matters. Add event to calendar Read About Our 3-Point Meeting Strategy HERE.

Thank You for Considering Climate Change

by Kristin Anderson & David White There’s quite a lot for Save the Alewife Brook to be thankful for on these last days of November in 2022. We are especially thankful that the public’s voice is being heard and that Climate Change projections will be included in the new plan to end untreated sewage pollutionContinue reading “Thank You for Considering Climate Change”

Letter to MassDEP

On November 21, 2022, Save the Alewife Brook sent a letter to Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.  This letter is in response to the 36-month extension that MWRA, Cambridge, and Somerville have requested for completing the planning of the new Alewife Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) plan. In our 11/21/2022 letter to MassDEP, we wrote: “WeContinue reading “Letter to MassDEP”

Join us for our Community Meeting

Please join us on Sunday, December 4th at 7 pm to discuss the new Alewife Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Control Plan. The second public CSO planning meeting will be December 15th and we are very excited to strategize about it with you! What would you like to see in the new Alewife sewage pollution controlContinue reading “Join us for our Community Meeting”

About that Disgusting Smell.

Over the summer, in 2022, Somerville, Cambridge, and Massachusetts Water Resources Authority held their first Alewife CSO Control Plan public meeting. At this meeting, Cambridge resident Ann McDonald asked, “When will the Alewife Brook not smell?” Save the Alewife Brook’s David Stoff has been asking this question since the 1990’s. When you take a walkContinue reading “About that Disgusting Smell.”

How the Myth of the Boston Harbor Cleanup Hides a Subsidy to Pollute

by David Stoff I’m going to tell you a story. I have a point of view. I’m not hiding it. Depending on your point of view, this story is either history, or myth. It’s the story of the cleanup of Boston Harbor.  Think it’s over? You can see the crown jewel, the Deer Island TreatmentContinue reading How the Myth of the Boston Harbor Cleanup Hides a Subsidy to Pollute

Join us at HONK!Fest

SUNDAY OCTOBER 9, from 11 am to 1:30 pmMarch with us in the HONK! Parade,at 11 am gather at the Day Street Parking Lot in Davis Square, Somerville ending in Harvard Square, Cambridge, at 1:30 pm Parade with us, along with musicians and puppeteers. Join us, to demand a safe, clean, and restored brook, forContinue reading “Join us at HONK!Fest”

‘D’ is for Dredge.

A Grand Day on the Alewife Brook Measuring Sediment Depth The Environmental Protection Agency’s mention of dredging the Alewife Brook in its Response to the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority’s April 2022 Draft Scope for the new CSO Control Plan has revived the discussion about the role removing sediment from the Alewife Brook can play inContinue reading “‘D’ is for Dredge.”

Why is the MWRA hiding sewage pollution?

The Boston Harbor Clean-Up worked wonders in the Boston Harbor and in the Charles River, but Massachusetts Water Resources Authority’s claim that they have achieved an 85% reduction of combined sewer overflows to the Alewife Brook is not consistent with their own data about the vast quantities of sewage actually discharged into our little brookContinue reading “Why is the MWRA hiding sewage pollution?”

Public CSO Meeting Strategy

We need a strong show of support on Wednesday night. The MWRA must make major upgrades to their regional sewer system. Their sewer system reaches capacity during many storm events. This is when sewage pollution is dumped into our rivers and streams. The MWRA will not fix the problem if they think no one cares.Continue reading “Public CSO Meeting Strategy”

Now is Your Time to Make a Difference

Public Meeting on Combined Sewer Overflows Wednesday June 29th at 6 PM We need you now! On Wednesday, June 29th, at 6 PM, Cambridge, Somerville and the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) are holding their first public meeting via Zoom to discuss Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs). The legal limit for sewage discharge in the AlewifeContinue reading “Now is Your Time to Make a Difference”

The Alewife Brook Resolution

On June 8th, 2022, Arlington Town Meeting voted 197-1 to pass a Resolution for the Alewife Brook that states: “Town Meeting declares the Alewife Brook to be a valuable natural resource deserving of equal commitment to rehabilitate and restore to the highest water quality standards feasible for wildlife, resident abutters, and recreation; and  FURTHER, thatContinue reading “The Alewife Brook Resolution”

Exciting News from EPA

In response the new CSO (Combined Sewer Outfall) control plan “draft scopes”, the EPA has sent letters to MWRA, Somerville, and Cambridge, addressing every single one of our concerns, which are described in our “Alewife Brook Path to Zero Sewage Pollution“. What is a “draft scope”? A draft scope is framework for the planning ofContinue reading “Exciting News from EPA”

A Path to Zero Sewage Pollution

for a Safe, Beautiful, Fishable Alewife Brook for Residents and Wildlife Save the Alewife Brook (StAB) is working hard for dramatic improvements in and around the Alewife Brook. Planning will be starting soon for what may be a huge investment to clean up the brook and make environmental improvements! The great cities of Cambridge andContinue reading “A Path to Zero Sewage Pollution”

Earth Day Alewife Path Cleanup

& CSO Tour with Ghost Fish Art Installation On Saturday April 23rd, 2022, Save the Alewife Brook volunteers gathered along the Alewife Greenway for a trash pickup, CSO tour, and ended the event at the Ghost Fish Art Installation at Mass Ave and Route 16. Save the Alewife Brook thanks the two dozen people fromContinue reading “Earth Day Alewife Path Cleanup”

The Dirty Secret About the Alewife Sewer System:

It was Designed to Pollute In 2015, the Massachusetts Water Resource Authority reconstructed and enlarged the Combined Sewer Outfall known as MWR003 in the Alewife wetland.1 This CSO was enlarged and functionality was added to it, to provide hydraulic pressure relief for the system downstream. Before the MWRA performed the work on this CSO inContinue reading “The Dirty Secret About the Alewife Sewer System:”

LATE-BREAKING NEWS! 1907 Board of Health Decries Unsanitary Sewage in Alewife Brook

In the historical Annual Report of the State Board of Health, published in 1907, it was determined that the Alewife Brook was the most polluted stream in the Mystic River watershed. It advised the city of Cambridge to implement a solution: “separate the sewage from the storm water in these combined areas.” This document readsContinue reading “LATE-BREAKING NEWS! 1907 Board of Health Decries Unsanitary Sewage in Alewife Brook”

We’re Speaking Truth to Power!

On March 11th, 2022, the Charles River Watershed Association, the Mystic River Watershed Association, and Save the Alewife Brook came together to speak with one voice to the Federal Environmental Protection Agency and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. Together, we collaborated on the following letter about the decades-long Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs) work; weContinue reading “We’re Speaking Truth to Power!”

March 13th Community Meeting

Join us on Sunday March 13th at 7 PM Please join us on Sunday March 13th at 7 pm for Save the Alewife Brook’s March Community Meeting! We’ll discuss the looming April 1st deadline, when Cambridge, Somerville, and the MWRA are required to submit the initial scope of their new Long Term CSO (Combined SewerContinue reading “March 13th Community Meeting”

MWRA Final CSO Meeting Bombshells

On February 17 2022 the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) hosted a public briefing to discuss their Final combined sewer overflow (CSO) Performance Assessment Report. This was based on their four-year CSO assessment, which looked at their system’s CSO performance from 2018 to 2021. This briefing was a requirement of the Federal Boston Harbor Clean-upContinue reading “MWRA Final CSO Meeting Bombshells”

MWRA’s Final CSO Report Meeting

IMPORTANT ALEWIFE CSO MEETING:THURSDAY FEB 17th at 10 AM The Massachusetts Water Resource Authority (MWRA) is holding an online meeting this Thursday, February 17th, at 10 am. They plan to claim victory for their Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) project. Their good work is a victory for Boston Harbor, but what about the Alewife Brook? TwentyContinue reading “MWRA’s Final CSO Report Meeting”

FEMA’s 100-year Flood Model with CSO and Environmental Justice Populations Data

Click here to use an interactive map that displays CSO locations, FEMA’s 100 year flood model from 2020, and Environmental Justice Population blocks. This interactive map displays Combined Sewer Outfall locations as clickable red dots. Clicking on the red dots will reveal additional information about each individual CSO, including links to the NPDES pollution permitContinue reading “FEMA’s 100-year Flood Model with CSO and Environmental Justice Populations Data”

MWRA CSO Report Provides No Solution to Alewife’s Problems

On December 30, 2021, the Massachusetts Water Resource Authority (MWRA) published its anticipated Final CSO Performance Assessment, as part of a series of regulatory reports that have been submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. These reports are a requirement of the landmark Boston Harbor Cleanup Case.Continue reading “MWRA CSO Report Provides No Solution to Alewife’s Problems”

StAB’s 12/13/21 Community Meeting

We held our second community meeting on Monday night, this time online. 50 area residents joined us from Arlington, Cambridge, and Somerville. Elected officials were there, including Senator Will Brownsberger, Arlington Selectboard Member Diane Mahon, an aide from Representative Dave Rogers’ office, and a number of Arlington Town Meeting members. MyRWA Director Patrick Herron presentedContinue reading “StAB’s 12/13/21 Community Meeting”

Cambridge’s ARPA Finance Committee Meeting

On December 1st, 2021, Save the Alewife Brook (StAB) attended Cambridge’s Finance Committee Meeting, which was dedicated to the discussion of the allocation of $80 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act funds. The Finance Committee includes Cambridge’s mayor Sumbul Siddiqui, Vice Mayor Alanna Mallon, Councillor Jivan Sobrinho-Wheeler, Councillor Marc C. McGovern, Councillor Patricia Nolan,Continue reading “Cambridge’s ARPA Finance Committee Meeting”