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Water Quality | Salem Sound NDA Info| NDA Map for New England Waters

Do you need to know where and how to get a
boat pump-out in Salem Sound?
Check out Salem Sound Pumpout Info.

No Discharge Area - for Cleaner Waters

Salem Sound Coastwatch is pleased to have worked on behalf of Salem Sound with the Salem Sound Harbormasters and the five communities: Marblehead, Salem, Danvers, Beverly and Machester-by-the-Sea to become the first North Shore No Discharge Area (NDA) on June 23, 2008. Massachusetts Coastal Zone Management and EPA Region 1 designated Salem Sound as an area where boaters with MSD Type I & II (marine sanitation device - heads) can no longer dump within 3 miles of shore.


Boats with Type I and Type II Marine Sanitation Devices (MSDs) can
no longer discharge treated effluent anywhere within Salem Sound.


What to Do When Boating in NDA Waters:
Boaters with Type I or Type II MSDs must do one of the following:
1) close the seacock and remove the handle
2) fix the seacock in the closed position with a padlock or non-releasable
3) lock the door to the space enclosing the toilet with a padlock or door handle key lock.

Type III MSD (holding tank) must be secured by either:
1) closing each valve leading to an overboard discharge
2) padlocking each valve in the closed position
3) using a non-releasable wire-tie to hold each valve leading to an overboard discharge in the closed position.

The NDA requires you to PUMP It, not Dump It!

Salem Sound Marine Sanitation Needs Assessment - Summer 2005

SSCW through funding from MA CZM Coastal NPS grant conducted a Salem Sound Marine Sanitation Needs Assessment and worked with area harbormasters, health departments, and representatives from marinas, yacht clubs, the Coast Guard Auxilliary, the Beverly Power Squadron, and Marblehead Sail and Power Squadron.

The goals of this project were to:

1. Increase Salem Sound boaters awareness of the existing pump-out services and accessibility of the facilities through targeted educational outreach,

2. Increase visibility and usage of Salem Sound pump-out services and improve or add facilities, as need exists,

3. Build awareness of Salem Sound's designation as a No Discharge Area (NDA).

Salem Sound Marine Sanitation Needs Assessment Results

During the course of this study, 871 boaters responded to the anonymous boaters' survey distributed by Salem Sound Coastwatch. Surveys were mailed to 4,063 mooring permit holders in the Danvers River, Beverly Harbor and Salem Harbor (Marblehead and Salem).

With an amazing 21% return rate on the surveys, it is obvious that Salem Sound has an active boating community that wants to be involved and responsive to the issues facing it.

Result Highlights:
96% of the respondents were aware of the federal law prohibiting discharge of untreated sewage from vessels within 3 miles of the coast.

Over 80% of respondents were aware that sewage might cause problems at beaches and increase health risks.

25% of respondents did not know of any pump-out facilities in Salem Sound.

58% of respondents have never used pump-out services, which included 11% of the boat owners with holding tanks.

70% of respondents have never dumped overboard, but approximately 15% have dumped untreated sewage within 3 miles of shore or at their mooring or slip.

86% of respondents said they would support a "No Discharge Zone" for Salem Sound.

All the results, survey comments and recommendations are in the following Salem Sound Marine Sanitation Needs Assessment Report and Guidance Document is available in PDF format (2.2MB).

SSCW held a public forum, CLEAN WATERS FOR BOATING, to discuss the results on Dec. 13, 2005. The presentation of results is available as a PowerPoint in PDF format (305 KB).