The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit unanimously affirmed a federal district court ruling supporting Massachusetts Water Resources Authority's (MWRA) program for drinking water treatment in the metro-Boston area.

In May 2000, a Federal District Court judge ruled against the EPA's assertion that MWRA was out of compliance with federal drinking water quality rules and was required to build a very costly filtration system. After a 12-week trial, the judge ruled that MWRA was already implementing a comprehensive program to protect public health and ensure high quality drinking water. MWRA is now 20 percent complete with building a new $342-million water treatment plant in Marlborough that uses the powerful disinfectant ozone to replace chlorine. The new treatment facility, along with the new MetroWest Water Supply Tunnel, will be online by early 2004.