Fortunately, the Massachusetts Bays have come a long way since the 1980's! With the help of numerous groups and agencies, Boston Harbor is noticeably cleaner. A 1996 Boston Globe article touted, "the harbor clean-up has turned into one of the remarkable success stories of recent years."

A volunteer learns about water chemistry with the Wetlands Health Assessment Program.

However, Boston Harbor is just a tiny fraction of the entire Massachusetts Bays region. MBP and its partners have made great strides in improving the health of the Bays' estuarine environment, with an understanding of the importance and inevitability of human uses and impacts.

  • MBP works through collaborative planning.
    From the writing of the CCMP to restoring salt marshes, MBP works in a formal collaborative structure emphasizing the role of communities.
  • MBP provides hands-on support and assistance for community and citizen action.
    MBP assists municipalities in seeking funds and passing bylaws, and holds technical workshops for local officials. Projects include working with communities to restore anadromous fisheries in coastal rivers and to restore tidal flow in wetland sites. MBP has also assisted conservation agents and planners to reduce land use impacts to threatened coastal resources.
  • MBP cultivates environmental education and stewardship.
    MBP conducts volunteer training programs to monitor the success of wetlands restoration projects, stormwater outfalls, swimming beaches, and to search for marine invasive species at numerous sites throughout the Bays.
  • MBP develops innovative models for improving resource protection.
    MBP led efforts to protect the Massachusetts Bays from invasive species by hosting a New England regional conference of scientific experts, and led surveys in 2000, 2003, 2007, and 2010 of non-native marine species in the Gulf of Maine. MBP also developed three regional inventories of Tidally Restricted Wetlands used coastwide to guide wetland restoration efforts.