August 22, 2016
Drought Worsens in Massachusetts
Jones River during drought The Roundup is coming out of its brief vacation mode this week because there has been so much going on!
Earlier this month Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Matthew Beaton issued a drought warning – the highest level before an emergency is declared – for Central and Northeast Massachusetts, including the entire Charles River Watershed. EEA strongly recommends that cities and towns in drought warning areas immediately ban all outdoor water use. The drought warning means that groundwater and streams are at or near record low levels, with a total of 16.86 percent of the state in the “extreme drought” category.
You can do your part to save water during this severe drought: stop watering and let your brown lawn be part of the new “green.” It will revive with cooler weather and rainfall. Find more ways to save water indoors with these 11 easy tips from our friends at the Charles River Watershed Association.
If your community relies on local water and has not yet instituted a full ban on outdoor water use, please call your selectmen or mayor and let them know that conserving water now is crucial. The choice between water for green lawns or water for drinking and firefighting is clear. Read the Department of Environmental Protection’s Guidance on Outdoor Water Use Restrictions.
Mass Audubon signed onto a letter with 44 other environmental organizations to Secretary Beaton calling for leadership and water conservation as the drought deepens.
Help us spread the word. Please ask your friends and neighbors to do their part by not watering lawns and conserving water indoors. Read more about this issue and how we can learn from the drought to better prepare for climate change in our recent Political Landscapes blog post.
Improving Community Climate Change Resilience
Climate adaptation graphic Hull – edited
© Aislinn Dewey The Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM) will award $1.8 million to support local efforts to prepare for and reduce the impacts from climate change, including storm surge, flooding, erosion and sea level rise. The funds will benefit coastal communities on the front lines for flooding and storm damage.
CZM’s Coastal Resilience Grant Program provides financial and technical support for innovative local efforts to increase awareness and understanding of climate impacts, plan for changing conditions, and redesign vulnerable infrastructure. Learn more and see which communities received grants here.