Deer Island Waste Water Treatment Plant

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Aerial view, Deer Island Wastewater Treatment Plant, 2010. Photo by Doc Searls.
Cyclists visiting "egg" digesters on Deer Island

The Deer Island Waste Water Treatment Plant (also known as Deer Island Sewage Treatment Plant) run and operated by The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority is located on Deer Island, one of the Boston Harbor Islands in Boston Harbor. The water treatment plant cost over 3.8 billion dollars[citation needed] making it the seventeenth most expensive object ever constructed.[citation needed] The plant began operating in 1995.[1]

Deer Island is the second largest sewage treatment plant in the United States.[2] The plant is a key part of the program to protect Boston Harbor against pollution from sewer systems in eastern Massachusetts, mandated by a 1984 federal court ruling by Judge Paul G. Garrity in a case brought under the Clean Water Act.[3][4]

From the 1880s until 1991, the northeastern side of the plant was the location of the Deer Island Prison.

Before the new plant opened in 2000. Deer Island had an ordinary capacity of 343 mgd (million gallons per day) and peak flow capacity of 848 mgd; therefore, the system would be overflowed an average of 60 days per year. This amounted to be an estimate of 10 billions gallons per year of untreated wastewater.After new construction of the plant Deer Island average flows of 380 mgd and has a capacity of 1.2 billion gal/d



Coordinates: 42°21′2.53″N 70°57′26.29″W / 42.3507028°N 70.9573028°W / 42.3507028; -70.9573028

"Boston Harbor Cleanup." Civil Engineering (08857024) 72.11/12 (2002): 168. Academic Search Complete. Web. 25 June 2014. Alonso, Enrique, and Ana Recarte. The Boston Harbor Project. Boston, MA:Massachusetts Water Resources Authority, 1996. Web. Keay, K., and W. Leo. Contingency Plan. Rep. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 June 2014. <>.