- Restoration is broadly defined as the act, process, or result of returning a degraded or former habitat to a healthy, self-sustaining condition that resembles as closely as possible its pre-disturbed state.
Key Programs and Projects Restoring HabitatsRecognizing the importance of restoration in the overall toolbox of environmental stewardship, Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) developed agency programs and projects or coordinates and partners with other groups on efforts that focus on restoring critical natural habitats. To access more specific information about each, click on links below.
The Division of Ecological Restoration (DER), within the Department of Fish and Game coordinates over 70 ecological restoration projects across the Commonwealth. DER was created in 2009 with the merger of the Riverways and Wetlands Restoration Programs. The mission of the DER is to restore and protect the Commonwealth’s rivers, wetlands and watersheds for the benefit of people and the environment.
- This program within the Division of Marine Fisheries has a three-year Anadromous Fish Action Plan that will enhance anadromous fish resources in the embayments and associated watersheds adjacent to the Hubline construction activities.
- In 2007, EEA Secretary Bowles formed the Aquatic Habitat Restoration Task Force which provided recommendations to guide restoration efforts of EEA and its partners.
- The goal of this Division of Marine Fisheries project is to enhance key bottom sediments within Massachusetts Bay by building a rocky reef in order to provide habitat that is critical to several life stages of commercially important species.
- The eelgrass restoration program, in the Division of Marine Fisheries, is underway in Boston Harbor to provide important shallow water eelgrass habitat to juvenile crustaceans, shellfish, and finfish which commonly inhabit sea grass meadows.
- The Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment was established in 1989 by the Governments of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts to foster cooperative actions within the Gulf watershed.
- The Lakes and Ponds Program, in the Department of Conservation and Recreation, works with local groups and municipalities to protect, manage, and restore these valuable aquatic resources.
- Based on a model of public-private partnerships that is strongly encouraged by EEA, the Massachusetts Corporate Wetlands Restoration Partnership is a non-profit organization that works to generate donations of funds and technical services from private companies that help advance aquatic habitat restoration projects. Donations often serve as critical non-federal match for federal agency restoration grants.
- Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program (NHESP), in the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, is responsible for the conservation and protection of Massachusetts' biodiversity including the species officially listed as Endangered, Threatened, or of Special Concern under the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act. NHESP operates the Ecological Restoration Program that supports restoration efforts in a variety of habitat types.
- The Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) has been designated by the Governor as Trustee for natural resources of the Commonwealth. NRD authority applies to injuries to natural resources managed by or held in trust by the Commonwealth for the public, and generally includes fish, wildlife, threatened and endangered species and their habitats, groundwater, drinking water supplies, lakes, ponds, wetlands, coastal and marine resources, anadromous fisheries, shellfish, and other sensitive resources.