In 2003 the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) completed Source Water Assessment and Protection (SWAP) reports for all public water systems in the state.
2003 Report for Cotuit Fire District Water Department
What is a SWAP Report?
Protecting sources of drinking water is essential for maintaining and improving the quality of human health and the environment. Source water assessments characterize the susceptibility of a drinking water source to contamination by summarizing information about the activities and land uses within recharge areas. Potential sources of contamination are identified for each individual city or town in each water supply protection area to use as support for planning decisions. Information gathered during the assessment process was incorporated into recommendations for actions that can be taken at the local level to protect drinking water sources.
The Source Water Assessment and Protection (SWAP) Program was established in 1996 by the USEPA as part of the Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments. SWAP emphasized the importance of source water protection as a pollution prevention tool that can be used as part of a comprehensive multi-barrier approach to source water protection. States were required to:
- delineate recharge areas for all public drinking water sources;
- inventory land uses within these recharge areas;
- assess the susceptibility of sources to contamination; and
- publicize the results.
The assessments help to focus protection efforts to minimize risks of individuals drinking contaminated water. These efforts may include developing source water protection plans, encouraging the use of Best Management Practices (BMP), establishing local protection teams and using other source protection measures.
What will the assessment tell me?
The assessment will tell you:
- Whether your drinking water is from a surface or a groundwater source,
- The locations of the wells or the intakes,
- The water supply protection area,
- Potential Sources of Contamination (PSC) within the protection areas,
- What recommended steps you should take to maintain or improve protection.
As a reminder, assessments are not conducted for systems that serve fewer than 25 people or have fewer than 15 service connections.
This report has not been updated since 2003.