State of the Waters: Cape Cod 2021

A project by the Association to Preserve Cape Cod.

How Healthy are the Waters of Cape Cod?

● Cape Cod’s saltwater embayments and freshwater ponds are suffering from the negative effects of too many nutrients.
● Water quality is in decline due to pollution from septic systems, stormwater and fertilizers.
● While the quality of most drinking water supplies remained excellent, some public drinking water supplies experienced contamination due to bacteria and nitrite.
Map Legend:
RED means Unacceptable: requires immediate restoration BLUE means Acceptable: requires ongoing protection

How to Use This Map

Begin by opening the map legend by clicking the button labeled >> on the top left corner of the map window. This will show the 8 layers available to toggle on/off in this interactive map. The default map setting shows points in each embayment across Cape Cod color-coded to indicate water quality status.

Select the > icon to the right of each map layer title (ie. 2020 Embayment Status >) to open the map key for each individual layer. This will show you what the color coding means for each layer.

 Center the map on a point of interest to you by clicking and dragging the map.

Zoom in by clicking the + button on the top left of the map window. If you zoom in two or more times, the map will automatically close the 2020 Embayment Status layer and open the 2020 Embayment Monitoring Stations layer, which shows where water samples were collected.

Click on a color-coded feature on the map to open a pop-up box containing information about the selected feature. Many pop-up boxes will contain links that you can click for more information.

To view other map layers including 2020 Ponds Status, 2020 Public Water Supplies, Sewered Areas, etc. click the boxes to the left of each layer name. Once a layer is open on the map, you will have the option to open or close the map key using the > symbol to the right of the layer name.

To return to the original default map view, click the home icon located between the +/- zoom control buttons on the top left of the map window.

About the Grading

Learn more about how we grade, term definitions and our methodology.