Cape Cod Commission

Barnstable, MA, United States

Cape Cod Commission

Barnstable, MA, United States

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Johnston R.J.,George Perkins Marsh Institute | Johnston R.J.,Clark University | Schultz E.T.,University of Connecticut | Segerson K.,University of Connecticut | And 2 more authors.
American Journal of Agricultural Economics | Year: 2017

Stated preference scenarios often describe outcomes to be valued in terms of intermediate biophysical processes or ecosystem services with indirect utility effects, rather than in terms of final, directly welfare-relevant consequences. This article evaluates whether valid welfare estimates can emerge from this practice. We begin with a theoretical model demonstrating conditions under which stated preference scenarios that include intermediate outcomes will elicit welfare estimates identical to those from parallel scenarios that include associated final outcomes (i.e., convergent validity will hold). The model demonstrates that a necessary condition for convergent validity is the ability of respondents to correctly predict biophysical production functions linking intermediate to final outcomes. Hypotheses from the theoretical model are then evaluated empirically using an application of choice experiments to migratory fish restoration in the U.S. state of Rhode Island. Empirical results are mixed but generally reject convergent validity; welfare estimates are not robust to the use of an intermediate outcome in lieu of a related final outcome in stated preference scenarios, as predicted by theory. Results of the analysis suggest that greater attention should be given to the reliability of welfare estimation when final outcomes cannot be quantified. © The Authors 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association. All rights reserved.


Horsley S.,Horsley Witten Group Inc | Perry E.,Cape Cod Commission | Counsell L.,Three Bays Preservation Inc
Journal of Green Building | Year: 2016

This paper presents an approach described as “non-traditional” for restoring water quality and ecosystem services that have been degraded as a result of excess nitrogen. It focuses on emerging technologies often referred to as green infrastructure. These technologies may provide cost effective alternatives to traditional, gray infrastructure such as sewering and is likely to provide significant co-benefits including the creation of local jobs, the preservation of real estate values, and habitat enhancement. The paper focuses on the Three Bays estuary on Cape Cod to illustrate the benefits and potential of green infrastructure technologies. The Three Bays estuary is presented as a case study and as a representative example of implementation of the broader Cape Cod Water Quality Management Plan Update (208 Plan Update) – a nationally-recognized watershed planning project designed to provide a pathway for the fifteen towns of Cape Cod to achieve compliance with Section 208 of the Clean Water Act. The Three Bays estuary and embayment system is a scenic Cape Cod bay that hosts sailing, kayaking, swimming and shellfishing and is located in the Town of Barnstable. It is comprised of three primary segments that include West Bay, North Bay and Cotuit Bay. Sub-systems include Prince Cove that flows into North Bay, the Narrows that flows between North Bay and Cotuit Bay and Eel Pond that flows into East Bay (see Figure 1). The Massachusetts Estuaries Project (MEP) is a state-sanctioned watershed-modeling project that assesses the conditions of the state’s estuaries and required restoration goals. Its technical report (2006) indicates that the water quality of the Three Bays system has resulted in seriously degraded to moderately degraded habitat. The system is listed as an impaired water body on the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 303d list of impaired waters. An approved Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for nitrogen has been established for the embayment. This assessment is supported by more recent empirical water quality data collected within the embayment. The more current data documents a continuing decline in water quality with more common algae blooms (see Figure 2). © 2016, College Publishing. All rights reserved.


Parece T.,Cape Cod Commission | Owen M.,Cape Cod Commission | Shreve-Gibb B.,Cape Cod Commission | Niedzwiecki P.,Cape Cod Commission | And 3 more authors.
Journal of New England Water Environment Association | Year: 2015

As the population of Cape Cod has increased, so has the volume of nutrients entering coastal waters and freshwater ponds. The population has increased by about 60 percent since the completion of the Area Wide Water Quality Management Plan, developed in 1978 under Section 208 of the Federal Clean Water Act by the Cape Cod Planning and Economic Development Commission (CCPEDC), the predecessor to the Cape Cod Commission. This population increase led to an increase in wastewater flows, applications of fertilizers, and stormwater runoff with corresponding increases in nitrogen and phosphorus entering coastal and fresh waters in the region. About 85 percent of the wastewater generated on Cape Cod is treated by on-site Title 5 septic systems that do not adequately remove nutrients, discharging them directly to the groundwater that feeds estuaries, lakes, and ponds. In 2013, the Massachusetts Departmental of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) tasked the Cape Cod Commission with updating Section 208 of the Clean Water Act that requires "⋯areas with substantial water problems develop a water management plan to control pollution on a regional or 'area-wide' basis." To help communities address water quality impairment cost-effectively, and in an environmentally sound and sustainable way, a water quality Technologies Matrix was developed, consisting of a range of 45 technologies that can reduce nitrogen.


Houle J.J.,University of New Hampshire | Roseen R.M.,Geosyntec Consultants | Ballestero T.P.,University of New Hampshire | Puls T.A.,University of New Hampshire | Sherrard J.,Cape Cod Commission
Journal of Environmental Engineering (United States) | Year: 2013

The perception of the maintenance demands of low impact development (LID) systems represents a significant barrier to the acceptance of LID technologies. Despite the increasing use of LID over the past two decades, stormwater managers still have minimal documentation in regard to the frequency, intensity, and costs associated with LID operations and maintenance. Due to increasing requirements for more effective treatment of runoff and the proliferation of total maximum daily load (TMDL) requirements, there is a greater need for more documented maintenance information for planning and implementation of stormwater control measures (SCMs). This study examined seven different types of SCMs for the first 2-4 years of operations and studied maintenance demands in the context of personnel hours, costs, and system pollutant removal. The systems were located at a field facility designed to distribute stormwater in parallel in order to normalize watershed characteristics including pollutant loading, sizing, and rainfall. System maintenance demand was tracked for each system and included materials, labor, activities, maintenance type, and complexity. Annualized maintenance costs ranged from $2,280/ha/year for a vegetated swale to $7,830/ha/year for a wet pond. In terms of mass pollutant load reductions, marginal maintenance costs ranged from $4-$8/kg/year TSS removed for porous asphalt, a vegetated swale, bioretention, and a subsurface gravel wetland, to $11-$21/kg/year TSS removed for a wet pond, a dry pond, and a sand filter system. When nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus were considered, maintenance costs per gper year removed ranged from reasonable to cost-prohibitive, especially for systems with minimal to no nutrient removal. As such, SCMs designed for targeting these pollutants should be selected carefully. The results of this study indicate that generally, LID systems, as compared to conventional systems, have lower marginal maintenance burdens (as measured by cost and personnel hours) and higher water quality treatment capabilities as a function of pollutant removal performance. Cumulative amortized system maintenance expenditures equal the SCM capital construction costs (in constant dollars) in 5.2 years for wet ponds and in 24.6 years for the porous asphalt system. In general, SCMs with higher percentages of periodic and predictive or proactive maintenance activities have lower maintenance burdens than SCMs with incidences of reactive maintenance. © 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers.

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