Letters to the Editor

More needs to be done for improved harbor health

I read the article by Natalie Martin titled “Quartermaster Harbor gets a boat pumpout” (April 7). I applaud the installation of a pump for watercraft sewage. This is long overdue. I also strongly support repair of failed septic systems that may contact the Harbor.

However, it is important to note for accuracy purposes that fecal contamination has a relatively small contribution to the issues of water health in the harbor. Shellfish bed closures have usually been related to paralytic shellfish toxin, which is not related to human activity.

While we must absolutely keep human waste out of Quartermaster Harbor, this will not likely solve the problem of low oxygen content and poor circulation of water. Attention should be focused on restoring communication between the back bay and Tramp Harbor, which will likely have far more salutary effects on the water health.

— Scot Merrick

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