Massachusetts Stormwater Evaluation Project (MASTEP)
When it rains or when snow melts over an impervious area (for example paved streets or parking lots), water is not absorbed into the ground and it "runs off" to a lower elevation. This runoff picks up pollutants such as dirt and oil and carries them to the nearest water body. If this runoff or stormwater is not treated, it pollutes the river or lake where it ends up.
Project Goal: The goal of this project is to provide technology transfer information about innovative stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) to MADEP, conservation commissions, local officials, and other BMP users to help them make appropriate technology implementation decisions. Our objective is to assist communities to maximize environmental benefits of grant programs by focusing efforts on technologies that have the most promising potential to reach specific water quality objectives.
Project Background: Stormwater pollution, especially in developed urban areas, is a leading cause of water quality degradation in U.S. surface waters. Water quality problems associated with nonpoint sources of pollution, particularly stormwater, are being addressed by federal mandates that affect all states. Expansion of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Phase II, Storm Water Regulations requires stormwater plans from thousands of municipalities nationwide, and there is a renewed focus nationally on the total maximum daily load provisions (TMDL) in the Clean Water Act. This brings unprecedented attention and increased resources to stormwater control issues. These programs also are predicted to have a significant influence on the rate at which new technologies enter the marketplace.
Project Scope of Work: MASTEP staff surveyed agency staff and BMP users to determine what information to include in the clearinghouse. A database of stormwater treatment technologies has been created and information is being sought from product vendors. The searchable database includes a catalogue of various proprietary BMPs, their intended use and most importantly the status of verification of their performance claims. Technologies submitted to MASTEP undergo a performance data review process before being added to the database.
Project website: www.mastep.net
For more information about stormwater evaluation and background visit the project web site. This clearinghouse web site is a project of the UMass Amherst 'Massachusetts Stormwater Evaluation Project' (MASTEP) funded by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MADEP) through an EPA 319 (non-point source pollution) grant.