Boston Harbor Management: Issues, Structure, and Directions

by Richard Delaney, Univ of Massachusetts, Boston, United States,
Jennie Meyers, Univ of Massachusetts, Boston, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: The Management of Coastal Lagoons and Enclosed Bays


Alarming reports of massive pollution, highly publicized legal challenges and even Presidential political campaign accusations, all helped earn Boston Harbor a world wide reputation during the 1980's as one of the most polluted harbors in the United States. While the complexity of siting, design and construction of the $5 billion worth of secondary sewerage treatment facilities initially dominated the response to this situation, the scientific, political and institutional context for the overall restoration of Boston Harbor is equally instructive. This paper will examine selected elements of the overall strategy for pollution abatement focusing on factors which have especially influenced or controlled the goals setting process and the characteristics of the resulting management structure. It will identify current motivating issues that are expected to be significant and which could possibly alter the abatement process as it is implemented during the 1990's. Lastly, the paper will offer a brief overview of other competing uses in the harbor in order to provide a more comprehensive understanding of the institutional arrangements that have evolved to manage this complex set of land-use, access, aesthetic and economic issues.

Subject Headings: Ports and harbors | Water pollution | Harbor facilities | Water treatment plants | Pollution | Economic factors | Sewage | United States | Massachusetts | Boston

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