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MassGIS Data: MassDEP Major Facilities

April 2016

Please be advised: The information contained in this GIS layer is no longer current and the layer should be considered as obsolete. It was last updated by the MassDEP Bureau of Air and Waste (BAW) in 2016 and there are no formal plans or process in place to update it going forward. Questions regarding these data can be directed to the MassDEP BAW (Air.Quality@state.ma.us).

The Major Facilities datalayer is a statewide point dataset containing the location of a subset of facility types regulated by MassDEP’s Bureau of Air and Waste.

Table of Contents



The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) Major Facilities datalayer is a statewide point dataset containing the location of a subset of facility types regulated by MassDEP’s Bureau of Air and Waste (formerly the Bureau of Waste Prevention (BWP)).

The following “major” facility types have been located:

  • Facilities with Air Operating Permits (AIR)
  • Hazardous Waste Recyclers (HWR)
  • Hazardous Waste Treatment, Storage and/or Disposal Facilities (TSDF)
  • Large Quantity Generators of MA-regulated Hazardous Waste (LQG_MA)
  • Large Quantity Generators of EPA/RCRA-regulated Hazardous Waste (LQG_RCRA)
  • Large Quantity Toxic Users (LQTU)

New in 2016: Facilities with Ground Water (GWD) and Surface water (SWD) discharge permits have been removed from this layer. Permitting of these activities is currently managed by the MassDEP Bureau of Water Resources (BWR). See the MassDEP Ground Water Permits layer for Ground Water discharge locations.

The layer is stored in ArcSDE as BWPMAJOR_PT.


Data Universe
In April 1998, MassDEP’s Facility Master File Database (FMF) was queried to identify facilities engaging in the activities listed above. A “development coverage” was created from this data using global positioning system (GPS), address-matched, and coordinate-derived data developed at MassDEP and EPA Region 1. The data are current as of April 29, 2016.

Data Sources
The primary sources of information for this datalayer include:

  • Site-specific knowledge of BAW Compliance and Enforcement staff
  • GPS field verification by MassDEP staff
  • Surveys, site plans and locus maps from MassDEP records
  • Interpolation of orthophoto imagery and parcel data from MassGIS

The Attributes section of this page contains additional information regarding data sources utilized in the development of this datalayer.


Point Development Tool
To facilitate conversion of institutional knowledge and paper data to a digital format, the MassDEP GIS Program created the Point Development Tool (PDT), a customized application using ESRI’s ArcView software (the PDT application is available as an extension to the MassGIS DataViewer). The PDT provides a standardized platform that guides users through the automation and documentation of geographically referenced point data. MassDEP technical staff used the PDT to locate facilities based on knowledge gained in the course of their professional activities. On screen digitizing using the PDT was the primary method of automation.

Basemap Scale
Using data in the “development coverage,” the PDT navigates data developers to the general vicinity of a site. The PDT then displays the best digital base imagery available for that vicinity. In 1998, the PDT used MassGIS 1 meter (1:5,000) black and white digital orthophoto images (DOQ) as the default basemap. Where 1 meter 1:5,000 DOQs were not available, the PDT defaulted to 1 meter USGS (1:12,000) black and white digital orthophoto images or (1:25,000) USGS topographic quadrangle imagery respectively. When data development began, the only available digital basemap imagery for much of Massachusetts was the MassGIS scanned USGS (1:25,000) topographic images. Therefore, the base scale of this datalayer is considered to be 1:25,000.

Other Methodologies
In the absence of staff with professional knowledge, facility files were checked for location information. Facility files maintained by MassDEP contain a variety of types and quality of maps, including surveys, site plans and locus maps. MassDEP GIS and BAW Program staff reviewed this file information and identified the best manuscript maps and supplemental text information for locating sites. When suitable maps were not available, field verification was performed by MassDEP staff. Locations were entered using the PDT. With multiple years of orthophoto imagery and the increased availability of parcel data, many recently mapped locations were developed without the need for fieldwork.


The point attribute table for the MassDEP Major Facilities datalayer contains the following fields:

General Facility Information Fields:

FAC_ID Long Integer Facility ID from Facility Master File (FMF) Database. The FAC_ID is a unique identifier used in the FMF Database to identify facilities and their ownership.
FAC_NAME Text - 45 Facility Name from the FMF Database
ADDRESS Text - 38 Number and street address of the facility, as listed in the FMF Database.
TOWN Text - 21 The standard MassGIS city/town name.
REGION Short Integer A code corresponding to the MassDEP Region in which the facility is located. This field uses standard MassDEP Region codes:
1 Western Region - Springfield WERO
2 Central Region - Worcester CERO 
3 Northeast Region - Wilmington NERO 
4 Southeast Region – Lakeville SERO 
RTN Text - 9 DEP BWSC 21e Release Tracking Number (RTN). If a relationship between a BWP Facility and a BWSC Chapter 21e site was uncovered in the data development process, the RTN field will be populated. The RTN is a unique 7-digit site identifier assigned to reportable releases by the BWSC.  This number is preceded by the digit 1, 2, 3, or 4 (e.g. 3-0001234) according to the MassDEP region in which the site is located (see: description of REGION above).
HW_ID Text - 12 EPA Hazardous Waste Generator ID from the RCRAINFO database. A unique identifier generated by RCRAINFO, EPA’s database formerly known as the Resource Conservation and Recovery Information System (RCRIS).
SW_ID Text - 10 Historic Solid Waste Facility ID from MassDEP’s Solid Waste Facility database.
SSEIS_ID Long Integer Stationary Source Emission Inventory System ID from MassDEP’s AirQual database. This unique identifier is a composite ID composed of an EPA Air Quality Control Region identifier (AQCR) and a Plant ID.
NPDES_ID Text - 15 National Pollution Discharge Elimination System ID, a unique identifier generated by the EPA. If a relationship between a BWP Facility and a NPDES facility was discovered in the data development process, the NPDES_ID field will be populated.

Major Activity Fields:

The Major Activity Fields are Y/N fields indicating which of the more significant types of activities occur at a given facility. There are no specific if/then relationships between any of the Major Activity fields. Although Ground and Surface Water discharges are no longer regulated within the Bureau of Air and Waste, the GWD and SWD fields remain (null) for structural consistency.

AIR Text - 1 Air Operating Permit: A value of “Y” indicates the facility has an active air operating permit. This is a permit with specific restrictions on the type and amount of particulate or other matter emitted from the facility.
GWD Text - 1 Groundwater Discharge Permit: Historic field has Null value.
HWR Text - 1 Hazardous Waste Recycler: A value of “Y” indicates the facility engages in the recycling of hazardous waste.
LQG_MA Text - 1 Large Quantity Generator of MA-regulated Hazardous Waste: A value of “Y” indicates the facility is a large quantity generator of one or more Massachusetts regulated hazardous wastes, including, but not limited to, waste oil and PCBs.
LQG_RCRA Text - 1 Large Quantity Generator of EPA/RCRA-regulated Hazardous Waste: A value of “Y” indicates the facility is a large quantity generator of one or more EPA-RCRA regulated hazardous wastes.
LQTU Text - 1 Large Quantity Toxic User: A value of “Y” indicates the facility is permitted as a large quantity toxics user and falls under the requirements of the Toxic Use Reduction Act (TURA). For a TURA overview, visit the DEP TURA webpage.
TSDF Text - 1 Hazardous Waste Treatment, Storage and/or Disposal Facility: A value of “Y” indicates the facility engages in the treatment, storage and/or disposal of hazardous wastes.
SWD Text - 1 Surface Water Discharge Permit: Historic field has Null value.

Related Information

MassDEP Location Documentation Table: (BWPMAJOR_PT_LDT) - See DEP Standards for Point GIS Data.

MassDEP Underground Storage Tank Program: Effective July 1, 2009, MassDEP began implementing federal requirements addressing the registration and inspection of Underground Storage Tank (UST) systems used to store petroleum fuels or hazardous substances.  UST Facility locations were field-verified and/or mapped using digital orthophotos and parcel data.

Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) Combustion Facilities: The MassDEP Solid Waste Diversion and Disposal Datalayers include the locations of active and historical Solid Waste Combustion Facilities. Active MSW Combustion Facilities are a small subset of the Air Operating Permits in this BAW Major Facilities layer.

MassDEP Tier Classified Oil or Hazardous Material Sites
The BWSC maintains a file (release.zip) that can be downloaded from the MassDEP Web Site. This compressed (.zip) file includes a database (.dbf) file containing a record for all reportable releases tracked by the BWSC, and accompanying documentation (wsc_all.doc). BWSC updates the wsc_all.dbf on a regular schedule. Tabular data records in wsc_all.dbf can be related to the BWP Facilities datalayer by the Release Tracking Number (RTN) field.

General and technical questions regarding Chapter 21E, the MCP and waste site cleanup in Massachusetts should be directed to the DEP BWSC Helpline at (617) 338-2255 or (800) 426-0444. Considerable information on the waste site clean-up program is available on the DEP Web Site: https://www.mass.gov/orgs/bureau-of-waste-site-cleanup-massdep. For more comprehensive coverage of oil and hazardous material sites in the Commonwealth, see the MassDEP Tier Classified Chapter 21e Sites datalayer.

Environmental Protection Agency data
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Envirofacts Web Site https://www.epa.gov/enviro presents information in a searchable format. Using the Facility Name, Address information or HW_ID, facility records can be queried on the EPA Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRAINFO) web page.


The MassDEP Major Facilities datalayer is maintained by the MassDEP Bureau of Air and Waste

A regular update schedule has not been determined at this time. Updates may include improvements to mapped facility locations and/or the location of major facilities not included in the datalayer at this time. Updates may also include additional facility types and an altered database structure.

As of April 29, 2016: 2,106 features include refined locations and updated classification information presented in the "major" fields: AIR, HWR, LQG_MA, LQG_RCRA, LQTU, TSDF. Currently 68% of Large Quantity Generators of MA Regulated Waste (LQG_MA) and 100% of the other "major" categories have been located. 

If you have questions regarding this datalayer, please contact the DEP Bureau of Air and Waste at (617) 292-5720 or Air.Quality@state.ma.us.