It is a violation of federal law to discharge treated or untreated boat sewage within the waters of a No Discharge Area (NDA). In January 2009, legislation was signed that gives the director of the Massachusetts Environmental Police, and all that serve under him, the ability to issue an administrative penalty not to exceed $2,000 per infraction for violations of NDA regulations. This enforcement authority applies to environmental police officers, harbormasters, fish and game wardens, and police officers assigned to patrol the waters of the Commonwealth. Specifically, the law states that no person shall discharge any sewage, whether treated or not, from a marine sanitation device into any waters of the Commonwealth designated by the Secretary of Environmental Affairs as an NDA. All harbors and near-shore areas in the Commonwealth have been designated as no discharge, covering over 90 percent of the Commonwealth's marine waters (see Massachusetts NDA map pdf format of    Massachusetts NDAs - July 2012  ).

For more information on who can enforce NDAs, see MGL 90B Section 12.

For more information on penalties, see MGL 90B Section 5C.