Analysis of Salinity Concentration and the Per Capita Income of Hampden County Municipalities

Salts are extremely important compounds used in the facilitation of life for a variety of essential functions, but excessive accumulation can result in severe damage in humans and other lifeforms. Salinity might differ between different streams for a variety of reasons, including excessive saline water irrigation, usage of mineral fertilizers, poor soil sustainable practices, road salt usage, or simply differing geography. Studying a wide range of municipalities in Hampden County, Massachusetts, we investigated how the average per capita income of a town may influence a municipality’s salinity concentration. We predicted that higher per capita income would be positively correlated to salinity in streams. Using data collected by the Massachusetts Department of Revenue, we determine the county average income per capita and separated the towns into “poor” or “rich” towns depending on if they were lower or higher than the average. We chose streams from nine municipalities to measure salinity, DO, and pH using a Hydrolab Quanta-D. Regression analyses indicate that there are no statistically significant relationships between salinity and per capita income as well as no statistically significant relationships between salinity and overall municipal revenue. pH regressions showed no correlation between per capita or municipal revenue, but DO regression showed positive relationship with municipal revenue. Overall municipal revenue had the highest significance (p = 0.21) with salinity and a negative trend, but was still above the threshold of p < 0.05.