COTUIT WATER DEPARTMENT
SOURCE WATER PROTECTION PROGRAM
The Cotuit Water Department is interested in developing a Source Water Protection Program. Our supply is showing elevated concentrations of sodium (likely related to road salts). Although our preliminary testing shows no contamination by PFAS we remain concerned about contaminants of emerging concern (CECs).
The goal is to identify sources of pollution (including septic systems and road salting areas) within the contributing areas to our drinking water wells. A hydrogeologic study was recently completed that shows the modeled contributing areas. The size of the contributing areas is directly dependent upon the pumping rates of the wells. Approximately half of the summer pumping is attributed to lawn irrigation. Therefore, the goals are two-fold: a) reduce summer pumping to minimize contributing areas, and 2) manage pollution sources within the contributing areas.
The Water Department is exploring an Irrigation Policy/Regulation that is intended to reduce seasonal water demands caused by in-ground automatic lawn irrigation systems. According to hydrologic analyses, approximately 50% of the summer peak pumping may be caused by these irrigation systems and is amplifying de-watering (and probable ecological impacts) to the Little River and associated wetlands.
One of the objectives of the internship is to develop a GIS-based inventory of irrigation systems that are connected to the public water supply and to develop a public education/outreach strategy to encourage homeowners to reduce demands by considering alternative landscaping and/or the use of a private on-site irrigation well to relieve demands on the public system. In-field (early morning) surveys will be conducted to identify locations of irrigation systems.
A second objective is to identify contamination sources including septic systems and road salting areas and to develop a management program to address these threats. Management options could include upgrades to septic systems with enhanced treatment and reduction of road salting in targeted areas.
The internship is available starting July 1, 2021 and is funded for 10 weeks, 40 hours per week at a rate of $15/hour. The internship will require on-site activities in the Cotuit area of Cape Cod and mapping and/or GIS skills. The candidate must also have a valid Class D driver’s license and reliable transportation.
Please reply with letter of interested and resume to:
Cotuit Water Department
508-428-2687 ext. 101