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Massachusetts Water Resources Authority

DATE: November 28 , 2005
CONTACT: Ria Convery, (617) 788-1105 or

Agreement will reduce stress on Ipswich River

On November 16, 2005, the MWRA Board of Directors voted unanimously to admit the Town of Reading to the regional water system.  Reading joins the other 47 MWRA communities who receive water from the massive Quabbin and Wachusett Reservoirs in central Massachusetts.

Reading will use MWRA water to supplement its own wells.  The Town will be allowed to use an average of 1.2 million gallons per day between May and October in order to reduce the impacts of its water withdrawals on the stressed Ipswich River during periods of the lowest flows.

Since 1987, water use in the MWRA service area has been reduced dramatically - from an average of 340 million gallons per day in the mid-1980s to 220 million gallons per day in 2004.

This reduction is a result of aggressive leak detection, public education, voluntary conservation programs and new plumbing codes.

With the MWRA system 25% below its “safe yield” of 300 million gallons per day, there is ample water available for new communities to join the system.

MWRA expects the Dedham-Westwood Water District to join the system later this year.

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