NewsNotes #26 - November 7, 2007
In this issue:
Last But Not Least
The Increasing Importance of River Restoration in Response to Climate Change
Dear River Advocates,
Massachusetts rivers, streams and riverine organisms have suffered this past summer from a spate of hot, dry weather —perhaps a natural weather cycle or a perhaps evidence of human-induced climate change. Jackstraw Brook, Gulf Brook, Mattapoisett River, Parker River and First Herring Brook are among the streams that volunteers and staff from Riverways’ RIFLS (River Instream Flow Stewards) Program noted were exceptionally dry this summer. Experts predict higher high flows and lower low flows in our rivers in the future, along with the loss of cold water and costal river habitat, causing increased stress to fish and wildlife. The lead article in this edition of NewsNotes discusses how these and other adverse effects of global warming-induced climate change exacerbate existing problems for our rivers. The article also highlights ways we can work together to reconnect our rivers by removing barriers and enhancing connectivity, addressing flow and water quality issues.
We are always appreciative of—and often awed by—the ongoing efforts of each of the watershed associations, Stream Teams, RIFLS groups and land trust organizations to protect and restore rivers, watershed-by-watershed, as well as by the work of the regional, state wide and issue-oriented river groups. Each success helps an individual river and adds to our collective understanding of rivers and how to protect them. Losses to river health, which we all mourn, also add to our stockpile of “lessons learned” in anticipation of how to turn losses into future successes. We are all looking for ways to share our knowledge with each other and to advocate for rivers.
To that end, Riverways is excited by the efforts to establish a new statewide rivers advocacy group, the Massachusetts Rivers Alliance, and the enthusiastic response from the environmental community to that initiative. I’ll write more about this new organization as it becomes more established over the next few months. In the meantime, Riverways would like to continue the River Advocate Brown Bag lunches/suppers to bring watershed groups together on a myriad of issues and to complement the new Rivers Alliance and other statewide and regional groups. Save the date of Thursday, January 31st from 10AM to 2PM for the next Brown Bag gathering.
To strengthen the river advocate community and highlight the importance of partnerships, Riverways has just issued two Requests For Responses (RFRs) to promote river work on local rivers. One is the Adopt-A-Stream Stream Team Implementation Awards from $3000 to 10,000 (with a total of $30,000). Applications are sought by existing Stream Teams in partnership with municipalities, watershed associations and land trusts to implement projects. Groups that would like to use funds to start new implementation-oriented Stream Teams are also eligible. The deadline for proposals is Friday, November 30th at 2:00 PM.
The second RFR, the RIFLS Award, will fund the demonstration of innovative streamflow research, restoration or management projects. The goal of this award program is to assist RIFLS groups to use their stream flow data and take the next steps toward restoring more natural flow regimes and healthier river systems. Secondary goals are to encourage mutually beneficial partnerships and strengthen the relationships between RIFLS groups/local environmental groups and municipalities to support sustainable management of natural resources. The total amount of funding under this RFR is $35,000 from which the Department envisions making a single grant or one large and one small grant. The deadline for proposals is Friday, November 16th at 5:00PM.
Additional info and links to application materials for both these Riverways award programs, along with many other opportunities, are set out in the “ Grant, Fundraising and Award Opportunities ” section of this newsletter. You might want to take a quick look right now at this section, and the “ Calendar ” section immediately following it, for fast-approaching events and deadlines.
Riverways heartily welcomes Beth Lambert as our River Restoration Scientist. Beth’s background and training is in fluvial geomorphology and stream restoration. She has a “passion for communicating watershed science” to people who need to make on-the-ground decisions. She comes to us from the New Hampshire Coastal Program, where she worked on several dam removals as well as salt marsh and river restoration. Beth replaces Brian Graber who now is Associate Director, Restoring Rivers at American Rivers. We feel very fortunate to not only have Beth on our staff but also to continue working with Brian and our partners at American Rivers –thus having the benefits of these two highly qualified fluvial geomorphologists for the rivers of Massachusetts. We look forward to your meeting and working with Beth.
See you on the rivers, and at river meetings!
Joan Kimball, Director
P.S. The Mass. Watershed Coalition (MWC)’s “mwc-list” listserv is a great source of information on river- and watershed-related funding and job opportunities, upcoming events, recent articles and more. Many of the posted items are time-sensitive and can’t wait until the next edition of NewsNotes. You can access the mwc-list listserv at http://firstname.lastname@example.org, where you can subscribe to receive the posted messages to your e-mail address, or simply read them on-line. Highly recommended!
P.P.S.: Paddling a Kayak or Canoe? Wear Your Lifejacket!--People in kayaks and canoes in the Bay State are reminded that from September 15 – May 15 paddlers must wear their personal flotation device (PFD). According to the Massachusetts Environmental Police, most boating fatalities in Massachusetts are due to failure to wear lifejackets while in small craft in cold water or cold weather situations. Waterfowl hunters using canoes or kayaks are reminded that this law also applies to them.
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The Increasing Importance of River Restoration in Response to Climate Change
By Tim Purinton and Russ Cohen, Mass. Riverways Program
[The following article is adapted from “River Restoration and Dam Removal: Adapting to Climate Change”, which appeared in the September/October 2007 newsletter of the Mass. Association of Conservation Commissions.]
Conservation Commissions, along with land trusts, watershed associations and other resource protection advocates, have always been on the front line when it comes to protecting rivers and streams from the steady encroachment of development and land use change. The ongoing struggle of keeping up with landscape alterations is made even more difficult today by the sobering global warming forecasts for the region.
According to the Cambridge, MA-based Union of Concerned Scientists(UCS)’s report Confronting Climate Change in the U.S. Northeast, Massachusetts’ air temperatures are on the rise and may increase up to fourteen degrees Fahrenheit in the summer months by century’s end. Rainfall is also forecasted to increase, as is the frequency and severity of heavy rainfall-induced flooding and hot and dry weather-induced drought events. In other words, there’s a prediction of wetter wet periods and drier dry periods in the future that contrasts with historic weather patterns for the region of more-or-less even amounts of precipitation (about 3.5 inches) each month. Thus, the higher high flows and lower low flows in our rivers and streams caused by development and the proliferation of impervious surfaces, which already place our riverine organisms and ecosystems under significant stress, is predicted to be further exacerbated by the adverse impact of global warming-induced climate change. [Check out Water, Energy, and Climate Change, a recent EPA Watershed Academywebcast for a further discussion of these impacts, and suggested responses to mitigate the adverse impacts of climate change on rivers.]
Scientists from the UCS and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Changepredict that plant and animal species will seek to adapt to these changes by attempting to migrate to cooler areas. Rivers and vegetated riverbanks are critical corridors for migration and seasonal movement for fish and wildlife, and thus play an important role in their future survival. [Human communities will have to adapt too – see, e.g., Adaptation to Climate Change in the Northeast United States: Opportunities, Processes, Constraints.]
Although all of our rivers and streams are important, cold water and coastal streams provide unique aquatic habitat and support species under direct threat from global warming-induced climate change. [See, e.g., an EPA-produced brochure entitled Climate Change and Cold Water Fish: Is Trout Fishing An Endangered Sport?; Effects of Global Warming on Trout and Salmon in U.S. Streams, a report issued in 2002 by Defenders of Wildlife; and testimony presented to the U.S. Senate earlier this year by Senior Scientist Jack Williams of Trout Unlimited.] For example, Eastern Brook Trout need specific “coldwater” (68°F or lower) conditions to thrive, especially in the summer. And the once ubiquitous alewife could face even more dramatic declines as ocean temperatures rise and decreased summer stream flows impair juvenile habitat.
Massachusetts Rivers are highly fragmented and have the dubious achievement (largely due to the state’s prominent role in the Industrial Revolution of the 19 th and early 20 th centuries) of one of the highest concentrations of dams per linear mile of stream in the nation. Dams not only block or impair upstream fish passage, but also raise water temperatures, inundate spawning habitat and create impediments to the migration of juvenile fish. In other words, dams present a significant impediment to the ability of our aquatic and other riverine organisms to cope with the effects of global warming-induced climate change. Add to this the more unpredictable precipitation and “flashier” streamflow patterns triggered by climate change, and the steady beat of lost open space, and the importance of river restoration becomes even more acute.
The removal of dams and other barriers to fish and wildlife movement in and along rivers and streams presents a real opportunity to enhance the ability of our riverine organisms and habitat to withstand the effects of climate change , as well as safeguard important infrastructure from severe flooding. While it has always been a good idea to preserve the connectivity of river and stream corridors and prevent habitat fragmentation by dams, dropped culverts and other barriers (see Riverways’ River Continuity web page to learn more about what we and others are doing to address this issue), it is now more important than ever that we keep these vital riverine “escape routes” open to enable trout and other sensitive species to find safe refuge in tenable habitats as they cope with the stream heating and other adverse impacts brought on by global warming.
Trout Unlimited (TU) and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) have each outlined conservation strategies to combat the impacts of global climate change and each has stressed the importance of reducing fragmentation. According to TU’s Conservation Vision, “In addition to protecting habitat…we must reconnect high quality habitats to upstream and downstream areas by increasing river flows and removing barriers to migration.” (Trout, The Journal of Coldwater Fisheries Conservation, Summer 2007). Groups like TU, TNC and Riverways take a multi-pronged approach to restoring connectivity, through restoration projects to remove or retrofit barriers, working to increase funding available for restoration (click here for one potential funding source), and working on policy initiatives to ensure that infrastructure is designed and maintained with the environment in mind.
Conservation Commissions can play a direct and beneficial role in mitigating the adverse impacts of global warming-induced climate change on riverine organisms and habitat by enabling the removal of unnecessary dams and other man-made barriers on and along rivers and streams . Such restoration projects can be initiated by land trusts and other landholding organizations, businesses and other private landowners as well as the municipalities themselves. To assist in the process of river restoration, the Mass. Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will soon be issuing a guidance document that should facilitate commissions’ review and approval of dam removal projects (info on the document will likely be posted on DEP’s Wetlands web page once it’s issued). The guidance will make it clear that the restoration of natural riverine functions and values is a beneficial action, and that commissions will continue to have jurisdiction over the restored river corridor via the Riverfront Area and other applicable wetland resource areas. In the meantime, Conservation Commissions in the Towns of Plymouth, Wareham, Becket, Dalton, and Barre have understood the importance of dam removal and have already permitted pro-active dam and barrier removal projects to restore the integrity of their rivers and streams (click here for more info on these and similar projects). With new guidance from DEP, the hope is that many other cities and towns will follow, as will land trusts and other private landowners. Please contact Tim Purinton at Tim.Purinton@state.ma.us or (617) 626-1542 for advice and/or assistance on a potential dam or other man-made barrier removal project.
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Resources and Grants
Grant, Fundraising and Award Opportunities
(presented in rough chronological order by application deadline)
The Environmental Support Center’s Leadership and Enhanced Assistance Program (LEAP) is a two-year program that helps groups "leap" forward to achieve significant internal goals. Participating groups receive funding for consultants and training and support from ESC staff and opportunities to network with peer organizations from other parts of the country. LEAP'S application deadline this year is Friday November 16, 2007. A three-person leadership team from the participating organizations attends a two and a half-day Orientation Workshop, where they assess their organization's strengths and weaknesses, receive training on how to lead organizational change, and learn from other environmental activists. After the orientation, the participating groups receive up to $10,000 to help with expenses related to large organizational development issues. Click here for more info.
Riverways’ River Instream Flow Stewards Program (RIFLS) is currently seeking to fund the demonstration of innovative streamflow research, restoration or management projects that help to identify and maintain natural streamflow characteristics critical to supporting the physical, chemical, biological and functional integrity of rivers. Every proposal must include a partnership between a local environmental organization and municipal officials or boards from at least one town within the study watershed. A support letter from the project partner is required. Please read the RFR posted at Riverways’ web page or Comm-Pass (RFR RIV-LF-08) for more details. Responses are due on Friday, November 16th. Contact Margaret Kearns at (617) 626-1533 or Margaret.Kearns@state.ma.us for more info.
The National Estuary Program Community-based Restoration Partnership invites proposals for its citizen-driven habitat restoration projects - on-the-ground activities within watersheds of the National Estuary Programs (for Mass, that includes the Massachusetts Bays, Buzzards Bay and Narragansett Bays Programs and watersheds) that restore marine, estuarine, and riparian habitats benefiting living marine resources and foster local stewardship of the coastal environment. Eligible applicants are defined broadly to include municipalities, community associations, cooperatives, civic groups and other NGOs. The deadline for proposals is November 16, 2007. [Letters of intent, sent to Ms. Lore H. O’Hanlon at email@example.com, were due10/5/07 so you may want to call Ms. O’Hanlon at (434) 964-1968 to see if it’s still OK to apply.] See the announcement for more information. [See the EPA’s National Estuary Program web page for related info.]
The Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM) recently announced the availability of up to $400,000 in funding through its Coastal Pollutant Remediation Grant Program (CPR). The CPR Program provides funding to municipalities located within the Massachusetts coastal watershed for the assessment and remediation of stormwater pollution from paved surfaces. Project proponents must provide a 25 % match of the total project cost. CPR applications are due on November 20th, and all projects must be completed by June 30, 2008. To view the Request for Responses (RFR), visit http://www.comm-pass.com, click on “Search for Solicitations” and then enter ENV 08 CZM 02 in the “Keywords” box. Contact Jay Baker at (617) 626-1204 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
The Laura Jane Musser Fund: Environmental Initiative encourages communities throughout the United States to use a consensus-based approach to environmental decision-making. Under this initiative, grants are provided through two distinct programs. The Environmental Stewardship Program supports projects that work to manage resources of ecological, economic, or aesthetic value, and that include a broad range of community members and stakeholders involved in both the planning and implementation of the project. The Environmental Dispute Resolution Program supports projects that engage in a collaborative process in order to build consensus instead of confrontation, so parties may be able to resolve a conflict and move forward without resorting to litigation. The application deadline for both programs is November 28, 2007. Click here or contact Mary Karen Lynn-Klimenko at (612) 825-2024 or email@example.com for more info.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Division of Bird Habitat Conservation (DBHC) administers the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA)’s Small GrantsProgram, which funds the protection, restoration, and/or enhancement of wetlands that serve as critical waterfowl and other bird habitat. Grant requests may not exceed $50,000, and funding priority is given to projects that have a grantee or partners that have not participated in a NAWCA-supported project before. The application deadline is Friday, November 30th. More info is available on-line at http://www.fws.gov/birdhabitat/Grants/NAWCA/Small/index.shtm or by contacting the Small Grants Program Coordinator, Rodecia McKnight, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (703) 358-2266.
Riverways’ Adopt-A-Stream Program is currently soliciting project ideas for river and stream protection projects as part of its Stream Team Implementation Awards program. Proposals may seek up to $10,000 in funding. Please read the Request for Responses (RFR) posted at Riverways’ web page or Comm-Pass (RIV-AAS-08) for more details. Project submissions are due on Friday, November 30th. The projects must be completed by June 30, 2008. Contact Rachel Calabro at (617) 626-1549 or Rachel.email@example.com for more info.
American Rivers is now seeking proposals for river restoration projects for grant awards as part of its partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Community-based Restoration Program. Funding is provided through NOAA’s Open Rivers Initiative, which seeks to enable environmental and economic renewal in local communities through the removal of stream barriers. This partnership funds stream barrier removal projects that help restore riverine ecosystems, enhance public safety and community resilience, and have clear and identifiable benefits to diadromous fish populations. “Diadromous” fish migrate between freshwater and saltwater during their life cycle. Examples include alewife, American eel, American shad, blueback herring, salmon, shortnose sturgeon and striped bass. Eligible applications will be evaluated based upon four priority criteria: (1) ecological merits of the project, (2) technical feasibility of the project, (3) benefits provided to the local community, and (4) financial clarity and strength of the application. Grants are provided for three distinct project phases: Feasibility Analysis, Engineering Design and Construction. Average grants are $25,000 - $50,000. Applications for the first cycle of FY 2008 have a (postmarked) deadline of December 3, 2007(click here for the official announcement). Potential applicants are strongly advised to contact Serena S. McClain at American Rivers (firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 347-7550) to discuss potential projects prior to submitting an application. Applicants can expect notification about funding decisions in early March 2008.
The Mass. Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) recently posted a Request for Responses (RFR) for the FFY (federal fiscal year) 2008 round of its §604(b) Water Quality Management Planning Grants. [To access the RFR, go to http://www.comm-pass.com, click on “Search for Solicitations”, and then type BRP 2007-06 into the “Keywords” box.] The focus of the FY08 grants will be for watershed or sub-watershed-based non-point source pollution assessment activities that support DEP's assessment efforts, including data needs that are identified in: the Massachusetts Watershed-based Plan (http://public.dep.state.ma.us/Watershed/Intro.aspx); the Mass. Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA)’s Watershed Action Plans (http:// www.mass.gov/envir/water/publications.htm); the Massachusetts Nonpoint Source Management Plan (http://www.mass.gov/dep/water/resources/nonpoint.htm), DEP's watershed water quality assessment reports (http://www.mass.gov/dep/water/resources/wqassess.htm); the Massachusetts Estuaries Project (http://www.oceanscience.net/estuaries/); TMDL development; and public water supply source protection planning. Respondents, however, are encouraged to propose other suitable water quality assessment/planning projects. According to DEP’s 5-year basin planning cycle, priority or target watersheds for FFY08 include: Deerfield, Millers, Ipswich, Buzzards Bay, Islands, Quinebaug, French, Merrimack, Parker, Shawsheen, Boston Harbor(including Mystic), Narragansett Bay and Mt. Hope Bay, and Cape Cod basins. All proposals must be submitted by 1:00 PM on Friday, December 14, 2007. Project Summaries for previously funded projects are available on the MassDEP web site http://mass.gov/dep/water/grants.htm. Contact Gary Gonyea at (617) 556-1152 or email@example.com for more info.
The Mass. Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (MassWildlife)'s Landowner Incentive Program (LIP) is now accepting grant applications until December 21st from private landowners, sportsmen's clubs, land trusts and non-profit groups interested in improving wildlife habitat on their properties. LIP is designed to reimburse private landowners up to 75% of the cost of managing lands to improve habitat for declining wildlife species across the Commonwealth. LIP‘s goals are: identify and reclaim appropriate sites for management of declining habitats, particularly grasslands, old field and early-successional forests, wetlands, coastal habitats and pine barrens; manage and control exotic and invasive plants; enhance wildlife habitat for “at risk” species (i.e., any fish or wildlife species that is federally or state listed as threatened or endangered, is a candidate for listing as threatened or endangered, or is listed on MassWildlife’s Official State Rare Species List); and provide technical and financial assistance and guidance to landowners on how to manage their property for wildlife. Click here for info on how to apply.
The Environmental Leadership Program (ELP)’s New England Regional Network is currently seeking applicants for the 2008 Class of its Fellowship Program for Emerging Leaders. ELP is seeking candidates from non-profits, business, government, indigenous affairs and higher education with approximately three to ten years of experience in the environmental and social change fields (“environmental” is defined broadly to include public health, transportation policy and planning, economic development and broad-based community organizing). ELP will then award 20-25 individuals with the opportunity to join the Fellowship Class of 2008 and receive a years’ worth of free, top-notch professional development training on topics such as strategic communications, coalition building and public writing. Fellows also participate in discussions on the current state and future of environmental politics and practices; the role of all types of diversity in the environmental field; and the complexities of stimulating public dialogue, negotiating institutional politics and building diverse coalitions. In addition, associates engage in peer-learning sessions on current environmental issues, discussions with established environmental leaders and conversations about leadership. Retreats also provide participants with opportunities for personal reflection and play a critical role in helping Fellows form a collaborative and supportive peer network. Click here for more details; the application deadline is January 4th, 2008. Contact ELP at firstname.lastname@example.org or (617) 755-6719 for more info. [Click here to apply to Boston-based GreenCorps’ 2008-2009 Environmental Leadership Training Program; the deadline is January 18th.]
The Robert and Patricia Switzer Foundation invites applications from highly talented graduate students in New England and California for Switzer Environmental Fellowships for the 2008-9 academic year. The award amount is $15,000. Twenty fellowships will be awarded to assist graduate students in a broad range of environmental science and related fields. Candidates for the Switzer Fellowship are chosen not only for their excellence in academic and scientific work, but also on their true dedication to aggressively pursue practical solutions to environmental problems. Please note that nominations will not be required this year, and the deadline for applications is February 1, 2008. Click here or contact Don Brackett at (207) 338-5654 for more info.
The Ithaca, NY-based Park Foundation’s environmental giving is primarily devoted to raising public awareness of freshwater issues — particularly availability, quality, and accessibility. he foundation seeks strategic and sustainable solutions to these challenges at a national level, with a specific concentration in the eastern United States. The foundation funds both established non-profit organizations and modest grassroots initiatives, especially those networking with others concerned with freshwater sustainability issues. Click here for options on how to apply for funding (there is no application deadline). Contact the Foundation at (607) 272-9124 or email@example.com for more info.
The Laguna Beach, CA-based Marisla Foundation’s environmental grants focus on the preservation of species and habitat—especially marine resources. It aims to fund projects designed to preserve natural resources and to foster community involvement. The Foundation will fund non-profit organizations, capacity building, education, land acquisition, scientific research, general purposes, multi-year grants, operating costs, pilot projects, and seed money. Contact the Foundation directly [H.M. Bedolfe, Environmental Program Director, at (949) 494-0365 or (714) 494-8392 (fax)] for more details on the application process and upcoming proposal deadlines.
The Google Grants in-kind (i.e., free) advertising program supports §501(c)(3) non-profit organizations sharing the company’s philosophy of community service to help the world in areas such as science and technology, education, global public health, the environment, youth advocacy, and the arts. Google Grants utilizes the company’s advertising product, Google Adwords, to help non-profits (such as Trout Unlimited (TU)) seeking to inform and engage their constituents on-line. Your organization’s ads appear beside related Google search results, people click on your ads and are then connected to your organization’s web page. From within your AdWords account, you can review the performance statistics of your ad campaigns. You will be able to view the number of times your ad was viewed (an impression), the number of clicks to your ad, etc. You can even track conversions, such as donations, newsletter signups, and volunteer registrations! Click here for more info.
Published every other month for more than 25 years, the Grassroots Fundraising Journal produces much-needed information on how to build successful organizations. Each issue offers practical, how-to instruction on fundraising strategies such as direct mail, special events, major gift campaigns, and on-line fundraising. It also offer tools to help you build a board of directors that is willing to raise money, choose a database to track donors, manage your time effectively, and ultimately develop a successful fundraising program. Click here for a special introductory subscription rate of $30 (a savings of $9-26 off the regular rate) – some articles are also accessible for free on-line.
Last but not least – the Grantstation website (mentioned in NewsNotes #25) includes a ten-part series entitled Easy Fundraising Ideas: Yes, They Really Exist!, put together by Howard Gottlieb, President, Easy Fundraising Ideas
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Third Sector New England is sponsoring a “Nonprofit Workout” conference entitled “The Way We Lead: Creating Adaptive, Inclusive Organizations”, on Friday, November 9th at the Omni Parker House in Boston. This event will offer strategies for strengthening the essential elements of effective nonprofit leadership in an intensive workshop format. Participants will look at what’s new and what works in fundraising, leadership development, communications, team building, and strategic alliances. The Nonprofit Workout is relevant for both those new to the nonprofit field as well as seasoned professionals, including senior managers, staff, board members, executive directors, consultants, volunteers, and other leaders. Click here or call (617) 523-6565 for more info.
Regional impacts from climate change will affect natural resources -- particularly flood plains, coastal resources, rivers and precipitation -- in ways we can't control and in ways we can. To address this, the Association of Massachusetts Wetland Scientists (AMWS) has chosen Climate Change in New England: Projections & Policy as the topic of their 2007 Annual Meeting, which is scheduled for Friday, November 9th from 9:00AM – 4:30 PM at the Babson Executive Conference Center in Wellesley. The meeting will feature internationally-acclaimed scientists from New England and state policymakers (including EEA Secretary Ian Bowles and DEP Commissioner Laurie Burt) and will focus on regional natural resource management, species migration and survivability, and policy in light of climate changes. Click here to register for the meeting.
Legacy Sediments and Historic Mill Dams: Their significance to restoring streams is the topic of a “webinar” scheduled for Tuesday, November 13th from 1:00PM to 3:00PM. Dr. Robert Walter and Dr. Dorothy Merritts of Franklin & Marshall College will present their remarkable work demonstrating the importance of considering the impact of 18 th and 19 th century mill dams on stream restoration in the Eastern U.S. Past assumptions about sediment distribution in streams and streambank erosion are challenged with serious implications for current water quality and wetland restoration efforts. Click here to register or for more info.
A forum entitled Adaptation: Helping people and nature cope with a changing climate, will be held on Wednesday, November 14th from 10:00AM – Noon in Room 222 of the Massachusetts State House. Hear from experts on how the Commonwealth should plan for the effects of climate change – flooding, droughts and changing temperatures – that are already impacting our communities, economy, biodiversity and natural areas. The forum will feature a panel discussion on adaptation policies and strategies and an interactive dialogue with policy and environmental experts. The free forum is hosted by the Massachusetts Chapter of The Nature Conservancy and Senator Marc R. Pacheco (Chairman of the Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change) and will feature state policymakers and speakers from the Union of Concerned Scientists, Mass. Audubon and others. Contact Steve Long at firstname.lastname@example.org or (617) 227-7017 ext. 313 for more info.
The Mass. EEA’s Office of Technical Assistance and Technology is hosting a conference entitled The Big Picture: Safe Development of Nanotechnology, on Thursday, November 15th from 7:30AM to 4:00PM at the Marriott Courtyard in Marlborough. The purpose of the workshop is to open a dialogue among industry, government, and the public on developing appropriate strategies for assessing and managing the risks associated with the manufacture, use and ultimate disposition of nanomaterials. Click here for more info. [On a related note: you may want to read a recent article in the NDRC’s OnEarth Magazine about the potential adverse health and environmental effects of nanotechnology, particularly the potential danger to shellfish and other marine organisms posed by “nano” silver.]
Ecological elements considered at the inception of planning for environmental remediation at Superfund, RCRA, and Brownfield sites can be a cost-effective and an efficient way to restore, create, and improve wildlife habitat or the ecological system of the site. The Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council (ITRC) is offering a free, Internet-based training class on how to do this entitled Planning and Promoting of Ecological Land Reuse of Remediated Sites on Thursday, November 15th from 11:00AM - 1:15PM. This training is based on an ITRC document entitled Technical and Regulatory Guidance: Planning and Promoting Ecological Land Reuse of Remediated Sites (ECO-2, 2006), which presents a process to promote ecological land re-use activities considering natural or green technologies instead of more traditional remedies. The guidance demonstrates that natural or ecological end-uses are valuable alternatives to conventional property development or redevelopment. Click on http://clu-in.org/studio/seminar.cfm to register or contact the ITRC at (402) 201-2419 or email@example.com for more info. [Click here, here or here for related info.]
The Trustees of Reservations' Putnam Conservation Institute is hosting the 5th Annual Managing Land & Visitors Conference: Multiply Yourself: Growing the Conservation Community in Massachusettsis scheduled for Saturday, November 17th from 9AM to 4:30PM at the Doyle Conservation Center in Leominster. This year's conference will address how to grow the base and skills of volunteers and supporters. Through discussions and hands-on sessions, you'll take home practical techniques that you can put to work immediately as you build skills, share ideas, and learn what other organizations and agencies in Massachusetts are experiencing, thinking, and doing to multiply themselves. Workshops include: Attracting Diverse Constituencies: Ideas for Broadening the Conservation Community; Urban Youth: An Untapped Reservoir of Stewards; Planning Volunteer Tasks That Create Win-Win Solutions; Preserving History: The Stewardship of Cellar Holes & Stone Walls; and Weeding Massachusetts: Making the Most of Volunteer Efforts to Remove Invasives. Click here to register or for more info, or contact Miriam Scagnetti at firstname.lastname@example.org or (978) 840-4446 ext. 1935.
“Smart Growth and Green Infrastructure” is the topic for the next EPA’s Watershed Academy’s next webcast, scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 28th. Geoffrey Anderson, EPA’s Director of Development, Community and Environment Division, Nancy Stoner, Director of the Natural Resources Defense Council’s (NRDC) Clean Water Project, and Noelle Mackay, Executive Director of Smart Growth Vermont, discuss how various Smart Growth and Green Infrastructure tools are being used at the regional, watershed and site levels to preserve, enhance and protect our water resources. Click here for more info or to access archived audio versions of past Webcasts.
The 2007 New England Private Well Symposium will be taking place December 3-4 at the Hyatt Regency in Newport, RI. The purpose of the Symposium is to integrate research, extension and educational efforts in the field of private well protection to reduce the risks associated with groundwater use to private well water users. Click here or contact Alyson McCann at email@example.com or (401) 874-5398 to register or for more info.
The Massachusetts 2007 Smart Growth/Smart Energy Conference will be taking place on Friday, December 7th at the DCU Center in Worcester. Governor Deval Patrick (click here to read the Governor’s Sustainable Development Principles) and EEA Secretary Ian Bowles will open the conference, which will include innovative sessions with “up to the minute” topics and a ceremony honoring recipients of the Massachusetts Smart Growth /Smart Energy Awards (nominations accepted until November 9th)and Healthy Communities Awards. The Conference will also mark the debut of the new, greatly expanded Massachusetts Smart Growth Toolkit. Go to http://www.eot.state.ma.us/smartgrowth/ to register or for more info.
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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently posted these on-line resources to its website: Total Maximum Daily Loads with Stormwater Sources: A Summary of 17 TMDLs report summarizes TMDLs that have been developed for stormwater sources in 16 states throughout the country during the past eight years. They represent a range of pollutants, models used, and different allocation and implementation methods that will be helpful to TMDL practitioners and NPDES permitting agencies and permittees as they develop and implement new stormwater source TMDLs (Click here for related info). Another interesting set of EPA documents – see http://cfpub.epa.gov/ncea/cfm/recordisplay.cfm?deid=180063 and http://cfpub.epa.gov/ncea/cfm/recordisplay.cfm?deid=180083 – concern the impact of global climate change on watersheds and rivers. [Click here for a recent article on the same topic appearing in Stormwater Magazine.]
The EPA’s recently redesigned Nitrogen and Phosphorus web page now houses scientific literature reviews, monitoring data, guidance manuals, and Webcasts to help states establish numeric water quality criteria for nitrogen and phosphorus. The new Web site also offers answers to states’ questions about how to use the criteria and a clearinghouse of water treatment technologies and land-use practices. The public can also visit the web site to learn more about this environmental problem and find out what each of us can do about it.
The purpose of the new EPA manual entitled Integrating Water and Waste Programs to Restore Watersheds: A Guide for Federal and State Project Managers is to enhance coordination across EPA, State, and local waste and water programs to streamline requirements, satisfy multiple objectives, tap into a variety of funding sources, and implement restoration activities more efficiently, with a goal of showing measurable results. The manual provides a road map to conducting cross-programmatic watershed assessments and cleanups in watersheds with both water and waste program issues and presents innovative tools to enhance program integration. Finally, the manual provides guidance on integrating assessment and cleanup activities to optimize available tools and resources and thus help restore contaminated waters and sediments efficiently and effectively. Click here to access an on-line version of this document.
On September 19, EPA launched a new Wastewater in Small Communities website to help small communities achieve and maintain sustainable wastewater services. This new site provides information about grants, funding resources, technical assistance and training. A variety of tools is also available on this website to help small communities plan, design, build, and maintain their wastewater infrastructure.
The Clean Watersheds Needs Survey (CWNS) is a comprehensive assessment of the capital needed to meet the water quality goals of the federal Clean Water Act. Every four years, the states and EPA collect information about wastewater collection and treatment facilities, stormwater and combined sewer overflows (CSOs) control facilities, nonpoint source (NPS) pollution control projects, decentralized wastewater management, etc. The upcoming 2008 CWNS will place a special emphasis on documenting stormwater and decentralized wastewater needs, which have been underreported in past surveys. Contact Patrick Rogers of Mass. DEP at Patrick.Rogers@State.MA.US or (617) 292-5658 for more info on how to participate in Commonwealth’s 2008 CWNS submission to the EPA.
Developed by the Mass. DEP, the purpose of the Massachusetts Watershed-Based Plan (WBP, http://public.dep.state.ma.us/Watershed/Intro.aspx) is to organize and present info about the Commonwealth’s watersheds in a format that will enhance the development and implementation of projects that improve the quality of impaired waters so that they can meet state and federal water quality standards. The EPA now requires WBPs for all waterways seeking to be eligible for §319 non-point source (NPS) pollution reduction funding. MA DEP drew upon Water Quality Assessments, Year 2002 Integrated List, Nonpoint Source Management Plan, EOEA Watershed Action Plans and Total Maximum Daily Load Analyses in the preparation of the WBP. The interactive WBP database should help you to identify known and likely causes and sources of nonpoint source pollution in your watershed as well as help you prioritize NPS problems, identify appropriate best management practices (BMPs) and watershed-based strategies for addressing the problems, and develop winning proposals to fund the work using §319 grant funds or similar programs. Read the FAQ section of the WBP web page to learn how to use this valuable tool. Contact §319 Coordinator Jane Peirce at (508) 767-2792 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you need any help using or have any comments on the WBP.
The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services recently released an on-line, how-to manual providing a step-by-step guide to designing and implementing a well researched and sound pet waste outreach campaign . It will show you how to work with local partners to motivate dog owners/walkers to pick up after their dogs and dispose of the waste in an environmentally sound and safe way. It gives readers background info to help decide if they want to start a pet waste outreach campaign, shows how to implement and promote a successful campaign, and provides suggested outreach activities, resources, and examples to make the campaigns easier. A successful campaign in Dover, New Hampshire is also presented to give readers ideas and encouragement. For a hard copy of the manual, please contact Cathy Coletti at (603) 559-0024 or email@example.com.
The University of Massachusetts (UMass), in partnership with the Mass. Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM), Mass. DEP, and the EPA, has developed an on-line Innovative Stormwater Technology Database to provide technical information on stormwater best management practices (BMPs). The goal is to help Massachusetts conservation commissions, local officials, and others to use these technologies to meet stormwater performance standards and achieve specific water quality and quantity objectives. The Massachusetts Stormwater Technology Evaluation Project (MASTEP) database currently focuses on proprietary technologies, but is being expanded to include both conventional and low impact development (LID) BMPs. Contact CZM’s Smart Growth Coordinator, Andrea Cooper, at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info. [See info on the UNH Stormwater Center below for a similar on-line resource.]
The Narragansett Bay Estuary Program (NBEP) recently updated its webpage to provide searchable, on-line versions of all of its publications along with the current as well as all past issues of the Narragansett Bay Journal. [Click here (may take awhile to download) to read an article in the Summer 2007 NBJ entitled “Blueways and Greenways: Paddlers and Hikers Map Trails on Land and Water”.]
State wildlife action plans outline the steps that are needed to conserve “at risk” wildlife and habitat before they become more rare and more costly to protect. [See the feature story on this topic in Riverways NewsNotes #24 newsletter.] The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies’ new State Wildlife Action Plans portal (http://wildlifeactionplans.org/) provides a link to all state plans and related documents, including Massachusetts’. [Click here for possible funding opportunities for implementing the recommendations of state wildlife action plans.]
Last but not least: Paddlers and others seeking to “open up” rivers through clearing riverine vegetation to make them more boater-friendly, make them look “neater”, etc., are well-advised to read Large Woody Debris Fact Sheet, a document developed and recently posted on-line by the Connecticut DEP’s Inland Fisheries Program’s Habitat Conservation and Enhancement Group. While some boaters may perceive trees extending onto the river channel as obstacles that should be removed, this fact sheet points out the many ecological and other values trees and other large woody debris (LWD) bestow on riverine organisms and habitats. While the fact sheet makes a strong argument for leaving LWD in place as much as possible, it also offers tips for how to judiciously prune and relocate LWD to facilitate paddler use of rivers without doing undue harm to its ecological and other values.
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Non-government On-line Resources
(in rough alphabetical order)
Center for a New American Dream
Guided by the mantra “More Fun – Less Stuff!”, the Center for a New American Dream’s mission is to he lp Americans consume responsibly to protect the environment, enhance quality of life, and promote social justice. The Center works with individuals, institutions, communities, and businesses to conserve natural resources, counter the commercialization of our culture, and change the way goods are produced and consumed. Resources available on this web page include The Responsible Purchasing Guide to Bottled Water, recently put out by the Center-sponsored Responsible Purchasing Network (RPN), a national network of procurement-related professionals dedicated to socially responsible and environmentally sustainable purchasing. This guide helps raise awareness of the environmental downsides of bottled water to large-scale potential purchasers such as universities, governments and the catering and other food service businesses that serve them. The Center also recently sponsored a “don’t buy bottled water” action as part of its Carbon Conscious Consumer (C3) campaign. [The Sierra Club and Food and Water Watch also have on-line info to help persuade people and institutions to break the bottled water habit.]
Children and Nature Network
This web page was established after the publication of the book Last Child in the Woods: Saving our Children from Nature Deficit Disorder, in which author Richard Louv reported a growing concern of parents, educators and physicians: Children aren't playing outside much anymore — not even in the back garden or the neighborhood park. This change in our relationship with nature has profound implications for the mental, physical and spiritual health of future generations. In response, policy makers in various states have recently initiated programs and legislation encouraging outdoor time for school children (see, e.g., the state of Connecticut’s “No Child Left Inside” Program). Conservation organizations, communities, teachers and individuals are also developing programs and initiatives to reconnect children with nature. The C&NN web page provides a forum for educators, decision makers, parents and others to share information and ideas on how to enhance kids’ opportunities to play outdoors other than soccer and other organized sports. [Click here for info on a Mass. Audubon-sponsored conference on this topic; click here and here for information on proposed federal legislation entitled the “No Child Left Inside Act” (H.R. 3036).]
Ecology and Society
Billed as “a journal of integrative science for resilience and sustainability”, Ecology and Society (formerly Conservation Ecology) covers topics relating to the ecological, political, and social foundations for sustainable social-ecological systems such as: (a) the management, stewardship and sustainable use of ecological systems, resources and biological diversity at all levels, (b) the role natural systems play in social and political systems and conversely, the effect of social, economic and political institutions on ecological systems and services, and (c) the means by which we can develop and sustain desired ecological, social and political states. The link above takes you to a special issue (Vol. 12 #1, 2007) entitled Restoring Riverine Landscapes.
Environmental Health News (EHN)
EHN is a daily on-line compilation of news articles worldwide relating to environmental health. It is put out by Environmental Health Sciences (EHS), a not-for-profit organization founded in 2002 to help increase public understanding of emerging scientific links between environmental exposures and human health. Recent topics covered on EHN include articles on estrogenic substances in wastewater treatment plant effluent getting into river sediments, and continued and chronic violations of the Clean Water Act 35 years after its passage. EHN’s website contains a “New Science” column featuring paragraph summaries of newly published scientific findings from the peer-reviewed scientific literature, with links to more in-depth synopses at one of EHS’s other websites, http://www.OurStolenFuture.org (scientific findings specifically about endocrine disruption) or http://www.healthandenvironment.org (scientific findings about a broader range of human health and environment-related research). For more info, contact John Peterson Myers, Ph.D. at email@example.com.
Funders Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities (TFN) http://www.fundersnetwork.org/usr_doc/Parks_and_Smarter_Growth.pdf
TFN is a non-partisan, not-for-profit organization that exists to inspire, strengthen and expand philanthropic leadership and funders’ abilities to support organizations working to improve communities through better development decisions and growth policies. It brings together foundations, nonprofit organizations and other partners to address the range of environmental, social, and economic problems caused by development strategies that fail to consider the big picture. The link above will take you to a document entitled Parks, Public Greenspace, and Smarter Growth: Opportunities for Linking Land and People, which came out earlier this year. [Click here to access an on-line version of a related article entitled “ Livable Places: How Protecting Land Benefits Us All ”.]
IMRivers.com is a new web-based GIS mapping system that enables nonprofit River Network “Partner” groups to develop interactive watershed maps and make them available to the public. For a small monthly fee, watershed groups can use this tool to develop maps that display multiple layers of information including data, photos, videos and text. The information can be about land use, pollution sources, clean-up and restoration activities, water quality, flows, natural history, recreational access - in fact, about almost anything desired. The web page provides a short YouTube testimonial video and examples of maps local groups have developed. Contact Liz Salter, Interim IMRivers Program Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
Ipswich River Watershed Association (IRWA)
IRWA’s recently spiffed-up Web page includes two new on-line resources that should be of great help to communities in the Ipswich Watershed and beyond in reducing wasteful and unnecessary water consumption and achieving sustainable water resources management essential to maintaining a high quality of life, economic opportunity, and ecological health. Water Wise Communities: A Handbook for Municipal Managers in the Ipswich River Watershed identifies the top 20 water-wise tools that communities can use to protect water supplies, manage stormwater, preserve open space, educate residents, and restore the Ipswich River. Fact sheets provide an overview of each tool, local examples to illustrate its application, and links to additional resources. While the handbook is geared to municipal managers in the Ipswich River watershed, much of the information and links provided will be useful for other Massachusetts communities. Balancing the Water Budget: Model Financing Mechanisms for Integrated Water Resources Management addresses a major barrier to implementation of successful municipal water conservation and stormwater management programs: lack of sufficient funding. Balancing the Water Budget highlights new financing mechanisms that can help communities pay for these important programs. IRWA's initial focus was assisting the Town of Ipswich in evaluating program options and financing structures for a water demand mitigation program and stormwater utility. Questions and comments can be e-mailed to email@example.com.
Massachusetts Nonprofit Network
The Network was established in 2007 to advance a common agenda for the Commonwealth’s non-profit community. The Network’s web page features member services, such as access to a nonprofit consultant directory, info about its new Executive Director, former state Senator David Magnani, and a listing of upcoming events.
This Atlanta-based company was founded to assist small-to-medium-sized non-profit organizations in utilizing the Web to manage their membership databases and communications, secure on-line donations, etc. The company offers a free “webinar” to see if this product might meet your organization’s needs. One Mass. organization utilizing Memberclicks is the Friends of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail. Click here for an independent review of this product.
Pennsylvania Organization for Watersheds and Rivers (POWR) http://www.pawatersheds.org/WWeekly/issue.asp?ID=353#gmt
POWR is the main statewide river and watershed advocacy organization for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The link above takes you to an article from the 7/27/07 edition of POWR’s Watershed Weekly electronic newsletter providing helpful tips on how to “juice up” your organization’s web page. [Click here to access an on-line document entitled “Top Ten Tips For Watershed Organizations”.]
The Petition Site
Founded by CARE2, a non-partisan, on-line community of more than 7 million members taking conservation and other actions to make the world a better place, The Petition Site enables any person or organization to create and promote a free on-line petition on an environmental issue in three easy steps, utilizing an edit-in-place design which allows you to see your petition as it's created. You can also customize your petition to include start/end dates, include photos or video clips, set signature targets and more. The “My PetitionSite” section of the web page keeps track of petitions you have created or signed. Click here for more info, or here to sign a petition posted by Food and Water Watch opposing water privatization and in support of the Clean Water Act (see related item at Publications below). [Click here to sign a similar petition is support of the Clean Water Act and the Clean Water Restoration Act (H.R. 2421) posted by Clean Water Action.]
University of New Hampshire Stormwater Center
UNH’s Stormwater Center’s field research facility in Durham, NH demonstrates and assesses the performance of three different categories of stormwater treatment processes: conventional structural devices, Low Impact Development (LID) designs, and manufactured devices. (Guided tours of this facility are offered on a relatively frequent schedule – click here for more info.) On-line resources include a new Innovative Stormwater Management Inventory (developed with Connecticut’s Nonpoint Education for Municipal Officials (NEMO) Program), an interactive database of innovative New England stormwater approaches such as LID designs. Searchable by state and town, the Inventory is a database of New England sites where innovative stormwater best management practices (BMPs) have been implemented. Inventory users are welcome to add new BMP examples and provide suggestions for improvement via an on-line submission form. In a similar vein, the Environmental Business Council of New England (EBC) has developed a Low Impact Development Resources (LID) web pageto promote these techniques in New England. If you have any additional links to add, contact EBC’s Jacqui Tolbert at firstname.lastname@example.org. [Click here for information on EBC ’s Young Environmental Professionals Mentoring Program.]
Water Words that Work
Founded by nonprofit communications consultant Eric Eckl, Water Words That Work is a web video series and blog that helps nature protection and pollution control advocates become more confident and successful whenever they set out to change everyday citizens’ minds and behavior. Water Words That Work re-orients nature protection and pollution control professionals to the vocabulary and perspective of nonprofessionals, and helps experts translate their knowledge into messages that are clear and compelling to everyday citizens. The web page is intended to help nature protection and pollution control experts succeed at working with reporters and bloggers, overseeing behavior change campaigns, preparing websites and print publications, fundraising, speaking at public meetings and hearings, and lobbying public officials. Resources at this web page include a report entitled A Network of Networks: Email Lists, Nature Protection and Pollution Control, which provides helpful hints and examples of successful strategies for setting up and operating e-mail listservs and other electronic communication networks.
Wild Farm Alliance (WFA)
WFA was established by a group of wildlands proponents and ecological farming advocates who share a concern for the land and its wild and human inhabitants. Its mission is to promote agriculture that helps to protect and restore wild Nature (by, e.g., preserving naturally-vegetated buffers along streams to enhance fish and wildlife movement and habitat) In essence, WFA envisions a world in which community-based, ecologically managed farms and ranches seamlessly integrate into landscapes that accommodate the full range of native species and ecological processes. Resources at WFA’s website include briefing papers, a downloadable brochure entitled Biodiversity: What it is and how to increase it on your farm and info on two books: Food Fight: The Citizen's Guide to a Food and Farm Bill and Farming and the Fate of Wild Nature: Essays in Conservation-based Agriculture.
The Work of 1000
During the 1960s, the Nashua River was notorious for being on the “Top 10” list of most polluted rivers in the nation. Then Marion Stoddart got involved, with a resolve to bring the dead river back to life. In the process, she won a United Nations award, was profiled in National Geographic, and became the inspiration for A River Ran Wild, a widely-read children's book. Marion's story provides a window into both the early days of the environmental movement and the timeless question of what impact one person can have in the world. Marion Stoddart knew that one person couldn't do it all. Somehow, she had to inspire others to do the work of a thousand. Today, thanks in large part to Marion’s efforts, and the organization she helped found, the Nashua River Watershed Association, the largely-restored river is once again an amenity to the communities through which it flows. Marion's story - and the story of the clean up – is the subject of The Work of 1000, a documentary film currently in production. The Work of 1000 web page provides an up-to-date progress report on the film’s production, a timeline of Nashua River history, info on the filmmakers and the opportunities to tell your own Nashua River story and/or make a donation to help cover the film’s production costs.
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Publications, Posters, DVDs, Reports and Presentations
A second edition of Fundamentals of Urban Runoff Management: Technical and Institutional Issues was recently published by the North American Lake Management Society (NALMS). This document revises an earlier 1994 edition and was prepared with support from EPA’s Office of Wastewater Management and the Nonpoint Source Control Branch in EPA’s Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds. The update is important because of the tremendous amount of new information available as well as the significant shift in stormwater program direction from the historic mitigation-based approach to a more source-based approach. Click here to access a free on-line version of this publication.
The Center for Watershed Protection (CWP)’s new publication, Manual 3: Urban Stormwater Retrofit Practices , provides definitive guidance for the first time on the art and science of urban retrofitting. CWP's new manual reflects over two decades’ experience in retrofitting more than 25 urban watersheds across the country. Nearly 80% of the nation’s small urban watersheds were developed without effective stormwater practices. The key to restoring these watersheds lies in the practice of stormwater retrofitting, which involves sub-watershed detective work, storm drain forensics and imaginative design. This manual outlines the basics of retrofits, describes the 13 unique locations where they can be found, and presents rapid methods to find, design and deliver retrofits to meet a wide range of sub-watershed objectives. The concepts of retrofitting are illustrated in more than 75 figures, 150 photos, 60 tables and nine appendices. The manual contains: updated costs for retrofit practices; updated pollutant removal data for stormwater treatment options; a design point method to estimate individual retrofit removal rates; and practical tips to support the design, permitting and construction of retrofit projects. Click here for a free download; a hard copy will be available soon.
When a resource is as basic as clean water, it can be easy to take for granted. Flowing in and out of our homes and businesses through underground pipes, clean water for sanitation keeps our communities livable, our lifestyles possible, and our industries viable. But while steady access to clean water is a cornerstone of modern society, its future is far from secure. Clear Waters: Why America Needs a Clean Water Trust Fund, published earlier this year by Food and Water Watch, examines trends in clean water spending on a state-by-state level, pointing out the need for urgent action while explaining the benefits that could be achieved through the establishment of a federal clean water trust fund. Click here for more info.
Chad Pregracke was a high school student when he first glimpsed the trash that littered the bottom of the Mississippi, a shocking sight that launched him on a quest to clean up the river. After four discouraging years seeking government help without success, he decided to take his fund-raising private—and a corporate sponsor decided to take a chance on this naïve but unshakably determined young man. The new book From the Bottom Up: One Man’s Crusade to Clean America’s Rivers, tells this story in Chad’s own words. The book’s accompanying web page ( http://www.fromthebottomup.org) shares brief excerpts and reviews as well as a link to Living Lands and Waters, the river restoration and stewardship organization Chad founded to broaden his work. From the Bottom Up ($26, 320pp.) is available by clicking here or by calling (800) 437-5521.
Exploring a Sense of Place , How to create your own local program for reconnecting with Nature , is the title of a guidebook designed to help with the process of discovery and reconnection with the natural world wherever you live. It contains inspiration and practical tools to design, develop, organize, and produce an “Exploring a Sense of Place” program specific to your own bioregion. Click here to order the book, or contact Karen Harwell of the San Francisco Bay-area organization Conexions: Partnerships for a Sustainable Future at email@example.com or ( 650) 938-9300 ext. 15 for more info.
Solutions for Secretaries of Small NPO's , and its accompanying website, provide many helpful tips for successfully managing the organizational paperwork and other aspects of a small non-profit organization, including: ideas for meetings, record keeping, fundraising, volunteer recruitment, desktop publishing and graphic arts projects; a comprehensive, step-by-step guide to filling out and submitting the IRS’s “Form 1023” application for §501(c)(3) tax-exempt status; a free membership database system based on Microsoft Access to keep track of member info, mailing lists, contributions, etc; a free, easily customized website template, with complete instructions that enables anyone to quickly launch a credible, professional-looking website with their own domain name and on-line contribution acceptance system; a variety of free downloadable document forms and templates, desktop publishing projects and graphics arts ideas; and a reader forum where you can ask questions and share your favorite ideas.
How do you motivate people to give money, take action, or otherwise advance your worthy cause? The answer is marketing, and whether you're a nonprofit executive or a PTA volunteer, Robin Hood Marketing: Staling Corporate Savvy to Sell Just Causes shows you how to sell your mission as successfully as the great marketing minds of corporate America sell their products. Author Katya Andresen, a veteran marketer and non-profit professional (she’s currently a marketing VP at Network for Good, the Internet’s leading charitable giving site), demystifies winning marketing campaigns by reducing them to ten essential rules and provides entertaining examples and simple steps for applying the rules ethically and effectively to good causes of all kinds. Andresen, who is also a former journalist, also reveals the best route to courting her former colleagues in the media and getting your message into their reporting. [You may also want to check out Katya’s blog at http://www.nonprofitmarketingblog.com].
Earlier this fall, the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announced the availability of NB.210.7.17, ENG – National Engineering Handbook (NEH) Part 654, NRCS Stream Restoration Design, which builds upon the basic info presented in the NRCS’s 1998 document (NEH-653) entitled Stream Corridor Restoration: Principles, Processes, and Practices. NEH-654 complements NEH-653 by providing assessment and design tools that are applicable to any stream restoration work, whether it primarily follows a natural stream restoration or is strictly a structural project.. NEH 654 is available on a CD which contains high quality files for printing selected pages or for extracting graphics and images as needed. The CD also includes NEH-653 for convenience, as its basic principles are referred to in NEH-654. The CD also provides navigation bookmarks, internal links, and the capability of searching for keywords through the 1600+ page handbook. Copies of the CD may be ordered without cost via the LANDCARE web page at http://landcare.nrcs.usda.gov/, e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling (toll-free) 888-LANDCARE. Selected portions of NEH 654 are also available for free download at http://policy.nrcs.usda.gov/index.aspx (click on “Handbooks”, then “Title 210-Engineering”, then “National Engineering Handbook”, then “Part 654”). Call the NRCS’s Conservation Engineering Division (202) 720-5356 for more info.
Last But Not Least
Does your car have an environmental license plate?
The Massachusetts Environmental Trust (MET, http://massenvironmentaltrust.org) provides funding to many river and other water resources protection and restoration projects throughout the Commonwealth. A major source of MET’s funding comes from the sale of environmental license plates. Besides the “whale” plate (often accompanied in print ads by “Bob”, MET’s new marketing icon), sale of the “FW” (“fish and wildlife”) and “BV” (“Blackstone Valley”) plates also help fund MET’s grant-making programs. (By the way, these three are the only Mass. specialty license plates that exclusively fund environmental programs). Getting an environmental plate is easy and can be done on-line at http://www.mass.gov/rmv or at your local Registry of Motor Vehicles office.
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