Welcome to the Winter 2014 edition of the Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Program newsletter
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March 15 Cape Cod Natural History Conference Barnstable

March 22 MA Land Trust Conference Worcester

April 13-15 NorthEast Fish & Wildlife Conference Portland ME

May 1-3 NEERS Spring Meeting Salem

June 5-6 Cape Cod Coastal Conference Barnstable
New CZM StormSmart Coasts Fact Sheets Available
MA Coastal Zone Management has developed five fact sheets to aid coastal homeowners in effectively managing erosion while minimizing impacts to the shore. Find them here.  

EPA's National Stormwater Calculator Phase II Released EPA Logo
EPA has released the second version of its online stormwater calculator app. that estimates the annual amount of runoff from a location including changes in seasonal precipitation levels, frequency of high intensity storms, and evaporation rates.

EPA Releases Planning Tool for Green Infrastructure
EPA has released a new planning resource to help communities manage stormwater and wastewater with green infrastructure.  

Funding Opportunities 
Mass Bays Regional Service Provider RFR: Search for "ENV 14 CZM 09" on Comm-PASS

CZM's Green Infrastructure for Coastal Resilience Grant: Search for "ENV 14 CZM 07"
on Comm-PASS

CZM Seeks Support in Modeling the Effects of Sea Level Rise on Coastal Wetlands: Search for "ENV 14 CZM 08" on Comm-PASS

DEP's 604b Water Quality Management Planning: Search for "BRP 2014-01" on Comm-PASS

DEP's 319 Nonpoint Source Competititve Grant: RFR expected on or about April 1. Email DEP for more details. 
Regional Coordinators & Service Providers

News from the Bays

Winter 2014

Mass Bays Announces R&P Grant Awards

Mass Bays is pleased to announce the awardees for the fourth year of the Research & Planning Grants. For more information, see the EEA press release.
  • Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries - $15,500 to continue research on the impacts of small docks and piers on salt marsh vegetation in Massachusetts.
  • Friends of Herring River, Wellfleet/Truro - $20,000 to develop conceptual design options for the restoration of fish passage in the Upper Herring River watershed in Wellfleet.
  • Town of Essex - $20,000 to expand eelgrass transplanting efforts in Plum Island Sound and Essex Bay and address potential and observed impacts of invasive green crabs.
  • Jones River Watershed Association - $19,480 to develop a community-based method to monitor climate change related impacts on salt marsh in the Jones River.

Understanding the Plum Island Green Crabs 

The North Shore regional coordinator, Peter Phippen, is investigating an influx of the invasive European green crabs in Plum Island Sound. Hyper-abundant green crab populations were discovered as a result of the 2012 and 2013 Mass Bays Research and Planning Grants to develop and test an eelgrass suitability model. The projects, undertaken by the University of New Hampshire, found the green crabs were potentially adversely affecting the eelgrass transplants and the ecosystem as a whole. European green crabs, dominant benthic predators, were first introduced to the area in the early 1800's. Our sister NEP in Casco Bay reports that this summer they lost eel grass and mussel beds, as well as entire sea star populations, to a green crab population migrating from the north. Peter and UNH have teamed up to gather information about the crabs. If you've noticed changes in the populations or are interested in the topic, contact Peter. (Photo: Alyssa Novak, UNH)

Mass Bays Seeks Regional Service Providers

Mass Bays is pleased to announce a Request for Responses (RFR) for Regional Service Providers (RSP) to serve four regions of the Mass Bays planning area: Upper North shore, Lower North Shore (formerly Salem Sound, but expanded to the south), South Shore, and Cape Cod. Mass Bays is seeking proposals from qualified organizations to support the implementation and update of the Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan. View RFR on the Comm-PASS website by searching for "ENV 14 CZM 09". Proposals due: 4/4/2014 at 4pm.

Stony Brook Restoration Successfully Concludes 

In December, the Stony Brook salt marsh and fish passage restoration project in Brewster came to a successful end with the submission of the final monitoring report. All told, the project encompassed 6 years, over 2 dozen partners, and more than 30 monitoring/feasibility/progress reports to restore 20 acres of salt marsh and improve 3,000 linear feet of migratory fish passage to 386 acres of diadromous fish spawning ground and nursery habitat. Phew!

The Stony Brook restoration project began in 2007 with a feasibility study funded by a grant to Brewster from the Gulf of Maine Council and NOAA’s Restoration Center. Through the years, the project received funding and in-kind support from many partners. The Association to Preserve Cape Cod, the Mass Bays Cape Cod regional partner, served as assistant project manager for this restoration effort. 

In the third year following restoration, restoration benefits are evident as seen in vegetation changes (See before and after pictures below from Tara Nye, APCC). Long-term monitoring will continue to track progress and changes in the system. Congratulations to all the many partners who brought this project to fruition!


Lectures to Keep you Busy Until the Snow Melts 

Both the Salem Sound and South Shore Mass Bays regions are sponsoring lecture series. Each boast enticing topics and alluring speakers. We invite you to come out and enjoy them.

South Shore: Climate Change in Your BackyardHouse moving in Hull  

Sponsored by the Mass Bays South Shore regional partner, the North and South Rivers Watershed Association, and the Jones River Watershed Association are sponsoring a variety of talks related to sea level rise. The lectures will be held on the second and fourth Thursdays in March at 7pm at the Jones River Landing. Check here for details. (Photo: House moving in Hull, S. Grady, NSRWA)

Salem Sound: Underwater in Salem Sound  

This lecture series sponsored by Salem Sound Coastwatch, our Salem Sound regional partner, and funded by the Massachusetts Environmental Trust, will answer all your questions about what'sMerganser in Salem Sound beneath the surface of Salem Sound. Already halfway through the series, the first two talks saw tremendous turnout to learn about winter waterfowl and the history of the of the sea floor. The next two talks will address changes in our fin and shellfish communities. Don't miss these opportunities to learn about the Salem Sound region. Find out more on the Salem Sound Coastwatch website. (Photo: B. Warren, SSCW)
The Mass Bays Program is an EPA National Estuary Program dedicated to protecting, restoring, and enhancing the estuarine resources of Massachusetts and Cape Cod Bays. We facilitate partnerships to prompt local, state, and federal action and stewardship, convening stakeholders on the local and regional level, providing scientific basis for management decisions, and educating decision makers about problems and solutions.
The Massachusetts Bays Program is a cooperative venture of the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Commonweatlh of Massachusetts - Deval L. Patrick, Governor
Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs - Richard K. Sullivan Jr., Secretary
Office of Coastal Zone Management - Bruce K. Carlisle, Director
Massachusetts Bays Program - Pam DiBona, Executive Director
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