NepRWA was recently selected to help implement a $100,000 Supplemental Environmental Project (SEP) as part of a settlement between the Saint Gobain Corporation and the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA). A majority of the funds will be used to locate and design stormwater management structures at strategic locations around the Neponset Watershed.
Stormwater runoff negatively impacts the health of the Neponset River, the wildlife that lives in and around the river, and the people who enjoy the Neponset recreationally. Stormwater management structures that collect, filter, and absorb stormwater runoff help to keep our streams and rivers clean while replenishing our limited groundwater supplies. Location is key for efficient stormwater management and NepRWA plans to get the “best bang for the buck” by prioritizing sites that serve heavily impacted waterbodies, and sites that collect from several roads and parking lots.
A portion of the funds will also be used to support NepRWA’s Hotspot Monitoring program which investigates areas of poor water quality with the goal of locating and eliminating the cause of the pollution.
In 2012 US EPA inspectors found oil leaking into the Neponset River from the Saint Gobain-owned CertainTeed roofing plant (formerly Bird and Son) in Norwood. In addition to cleaning up the oil and repairing the leak, CertainTeed took the initiative to propose a Supplemental Environmental Project or “SEP” to EPA. The SEP provides a way for the company to go beyond simply fixing the problem identified at their site, by investing in an additional project that will enhance or restore the natural resources impacted by the problem.
We are grateful to the team at CertainTeed for choosing to invest in improving the health of the Neponset and look forward to working with them to implement the project over the next several years.