Board of Public Works approves funding for clean water and the Chesapeake Bay

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Jay Apperson

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Board of Public Works approves funding for clean water and the Chesapeake Bay

Grants and loans will reduce pollution, improve wastewater infrastructure

Baltimore, MD (March 8, 2017) – The Maryland Board of Public Works approved more than $34 million in grants and loans today to reduce pollution and improve water quality. The Board is composed of Governor Larry Hogan, Treasurer Nancy K. Kopp and Comptroller Peter Franchot.

“These are smart investments to protect public health and prevent water pollution in Maryland communities and the Chesapeake Bay. The Maryland Department of the Environment thanks Governor Hogan for his leadership on this environmental priority,” said Maryland Secretary of the Environment Ben Grumbles. “Upgrading the Back River Wastewater Treatment Plant and the sewage system in Cumberland will help us to green and grow the state’s economy and lead in the race to protect and restore Chesapeake Bay watersheds.”

The following projects were approved today:

Cumberland Combined Sewer Overflow Storage Facility Phase I project – Allegany County

Funding of $30,234,191 – a $27,241,372 Bay Restoration Fund grant and a $2,992,819 Water Quality State Revolving Loan Fund loan to the City of Cumberland – will help fund the construction of a facility to store and treat sewer overflows from a combined sewer system before discharging into the Potomac River. As opposed to sanitary sewer systems which carry only sewage, combined sewer system pipes carry both sewage and stormwater. The purpose of the project is to reduce the frequency and magnitude of combined sewer overflows at Cumberland’s Enhanced Nutrient Removal wastewater treatment plant. The underground storage facility will be located in the Mason Recreation Complex near the wastewater treatment plant. Captured overflows will be treated at the plant. The project will improve water quality in the Potomac River, a tributary to the Chesapeake Bay.

Evitts Creek Combined Sewer Overflow Phase III, Gravity Sewer Site Evaluation project – Allegany County

A $300,000 Water Quality State Revolving Loan Fund loan to the City of Cumberland will help fund planning for improvements to Cumberland’s sanitary and combined sewer infrastructure to prevent combined sewer overflows. The project will improve water quality in the Potomac River, a tributary to the Chesapeake Bay.

 

Back River Wastewater Treatment Plant Enhanced Nutrient Removal Upgrade project – Baltimore City, Baltimore County

A $4 million Chesapeake Bay Water Quality program grant to Baltimore City will help fund the planning, design and construction of Biological Nutrient Removal (BNR) and Enhanced Nutrient Removal (ENR) upgrades at the 180 million gallons per day Back River Wastewater Treatment Plant. After the upgrades, the facility will reduce its nitrogen discharge by 83 percent, significantly reducing the amount of nutrients discharged to Back River and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay. The plant is currently achieving phosphorus discharge levels that are better than the ENR goal. Excessive amounts of nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus lead to lowered levels of oxygen needed to support aquatic life in waterways, including the Chesapeake Bay. ENR upgrades of the state’s major wastewater treatment plants are a critical component of Maryland’s Phase II Watershed Implementation Plan.

 

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