As the global economy moves goods around the world at increasing levels, the rate of species introductions can be expected to grow proportionately. Although the majority of introduced species will never become established populations, some will pose a great threat to native ecosystems and economies. Invasive species are one of the most important causes of the loss of biodiversity, second only to habitat destruction. Invasive species have also caused billions of dollars in damages across the United States on an annual basis. As unique ecosystems and major locations for recreation and commercial activity, the water bodies of Massachusetts are threatened by aquatic invasive species (AIS).

To deal with this complex issue, the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM), along with the Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Program, led the development of the Massachusetts Aquatic Invasive Species Management Plan in 2002 and continues to work closely with the Massachusetts AIS Working Group, which is responsible for implementing the plan.