For Immediate Release - July 10, 2014

Patrick Administration Announces 13 Grants for Water Protection, Habitat Restoration and Education

BOSTON – Thursday, July 10, 2014 – Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary (EEA) Maeve Vallely Bartlett today announced $429,239 in grants from the Massachusetts Environmental Trust (MET) for projects to protect and restore rivers, watersheds and wildlife across the Commonwealth.

“The Massachusetts Environmental Trust has been a critical conservation leader in protecting the vital waterways of Massachusetts for over 20 years,” said Secretary Bartlett. “By communities and conservation partners collaborating and working together with the Commonwealth, we can develop important projects for maintaining and protecting our clean waters for generations to come.”

Since it was founded in 1988 as part of the Boston Harbor cleanup, MET has awarded more than $19 million in grants to organizations statewide that provide a wide array of environmental services, from supporting water projects in communities to protecting coastal habitats.

The grants will help support 13 projects in Amherst, Great Barrington, Ipswich, Lee, Lincoln, Methuen, Newton, Plymouth, Provincetown, Taunton, Wareham, Weston and Westport. Funding for this program comes from the sale of the state’s three environmentally themed specialty license plates: the Right Whale Tail, the Leaping Brook Trout and the Blackstone Valley Mill.

The grant awards range from $15,000 to $50,000 and are listed below:

  • Clean River Project, Inc. (Methuen) – $25,000 to remove large debris such as automobiles and tires from the Merrimack River.
  • Charles River Watershed Association (Weston) – $34,000 to improve Charles River water quality testing and public notification.
  • Housatonic Valley Association (Lee) – $15,911 to design and install stormwater vegetative buffers to reduce roadway runoff into Churchill Brook in Pittsfield.
  • Ipswich River Watershed Association (Ipswich) – $30,000 to support the engineering/design phase of the removal of the South Middleton Dam on the Ipswich River.
  • MassAudubon (Lincoln) – $50,000 to develop a sustainable management plan for the Horseshoe Crab harvest in Wellfleet.
  • Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies (Provincetown) – $45,000 to investigate if pharmaceuticals from wastewater are bioaccumulating in marine plants and animals.
  • Save the Bay (Providence, RI) – $49,374 to install a fishway at the Draka Dam on the Three Mile River in Taunton.
  • Silent Spring Institute (Newton) – $40,000 to investigate how perfluorinated chemicals leach from consumer products into domestic wastewater and the Cape Cod Aquifer.
  • Town of Amherst – $36,100 to study the contamination of Fearing Brook, and to develop and begin to implement remedial strategies to improve the water quality of the brook.
  • Town of Great Barrington – $30,000 to study water quality in Lake Mansfield.
  • Town of Plymouth – $38,854 to comprehensively track overall water quality during one summer in 35 Great Ponds.
  • Trout Unlimited, Southeast Massachusetts Chapter - $20,000 to support fish passage and ecological restoration at Century Bog in Wareham.
  • Westport River Watershed Association – $15,000 to identify sources of fecal coliform pollution in the West Branch of the Westport River.

MET, established by the Massachusetts Legislature as a state trust in 1988, is governed by a nine-member board of trustees appointed by the EEA Secretary.