Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Partnership (MASSBAYS)

MassBays is an EPA National Estuary Program dedicated to protecting, restoring, and enhancing the estuarine resources of Ipswich Bay, Massachusetts Bay, and Cape Cod Bay.

Who we serve

Established as a National Estuary Program in 1990, the MassBays region covers more than 1000 miles of coastline, from the tip of Cape Cod Bay to the New Hampshire border, and serves 50 coastal communities. To provide technical assistance to all communities in the planning area, MassBays has teamed up with five partnering organizations to host MassBays regional coordinators. The regional coordinators work closely with communities to implement program goals and objectives in five coastal subregions: Upper North Shore, Lower North Shore, Metro Boston, South Shore, and Cape Cod.

For a complete list of our programs visit the Site Map.


The EPA National Estuary Program

The EPA National Estuary Program (NEP) was established under Section 320 of the Clean Water Act to protect and restore the water quality and ecological integrity of estuaries of national significance. There are currently 28 estuaries from around the U.S. in this program. To learn more about the NEPs visit the NEP Story Map. This interactive tool describes the vital resources of each estuary and highlights the role of local partnerships in protecting these resources and addressing the issues they face. 

Visit the Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Partnership Story Map


Announcement: Healthy Estuaries Grants  - Call for pre-proposals 

The Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Partnership (MassBays) is seeking proposals for the Fiscal Year 2020 Healthy Estuaries Grant Program. Eligible projects include habitat research, near-shore monitoring and data analysis, and restoration planning initiatives that advance the goals and priorities described in the 2019 Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan. To view the Request for Responses (RFR) and download required forms, see the COMMBUYS website. Check out details on past projects. Pre-proposals are due by April 2 at 12:00 p.m. Full proposals, by invitation only, will be due by May 1.

NOTE: The coronavirus outbreak is causing many disruptions to all sectors. However we have not extended the deadline for the pre-proposal submission at this time. Because we provide longer-term grants spanning two field seasons, we hope to stay on schedule. A significant delay could force us to wait until next fiscal year to reopen the call for proposals. The April 2 deadline is for the two-page pre-proposal. The pre-proposal does not require significant detail (ee Attachment D to the RFR). 


Zoom Into the Estuaries: MassBays Assessment Area Story Map

In order to capture the richness and complexity of its estuaries, MassBays has developed a Story Map to characterize its ecosystems and how human activities are shaping its planning area. For a closer look check out the story map and associated description.




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Locations of Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Partnership

Image credits:  Salem Sound (N. Moreno)