The Mystic River Clean Water Campaign advocates for unimpaired water quality to be established in the 22 community, Mystic River Watershed. The Clean Water Campaign is based upon the Mystic River Watershed Association's Water Quality Policy Statement, adopted in March 2012.
Thanks to 40 years of effort and results obtained from MyRWA’s certified water quality monitoring programs, water chemistry and the sources of pollution within the Mystic are now well understood. Now is the time to execute solutions.
To attain the high goals set out in the Mystic River Watershed Association’s Water Quality Policy Statement, concerted and coordinated action from residents, municipalities, regulators and legislators is required. It is important to engage all key stakeholders to develop appropriate clean-up and restoration plans and to secure funding to implement these efforts. To support this initiative, MyRWA will continue to enhance its communication programs to increase awareness of water quality challenges and opportunities in the Mystic.
For the first wave of the Mystic River Clean Water Campaign, the Alewife Brook sub-watershed is the focus. The Alewife area is in need of considerable improvements. Alewife Brook impairments include consistently poor water quality, habitat deterioration, development pressures, flooding issues, sediment and flow concerns and Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs). Meanwhile, it is also an area with good work underway – the City of Cambridge and MWRA are undertaking considerable renovations to the sewer system (more info here), there are active community groups advocating for environmental concerns, and the Alewife Brook Greenway was recently completed.
In 2013, the Clean Water Campaign Committee developed educational handouts, attended community events to share water quality information and campaign goals, held various letter writing campaigns about environmental issues and provided valuable input on water quality communications. The Committee also focused on developing awareness around Combined Sewer Overflows and suggested action items for residential and municipal in advance of, during, and after a storm. Check out our list of tips here – you might be surprised!
- Join the Clean Water Campaign Committee. The Clean Water Campaign Committee meets monthly to strategize and implement increased awareness about current water quality conditions.
- Volunteers are sought to participate in this endeavor.
- Read this Q&A with MyRWA's Executive Director, EK Khalsa.
- Town of Arlington stormwater information
- Somerville's Reducing Stormwater Pollution into the Alewife Brook brochure
Where Can Residents, Reporters, and Stakeholders Learn More About Existing Conditions?
- Mystic River Watershed Association's website provides a wealth of information on existing conditions in the watershed, as well as information on educational events and safe recreational opportunities.
- Mystic River Electronic Environmental Atlas - an online map based information system developed by MyRWA and the Metropolitan Area Planning Council.
- Municipal websites in towns and cities in the watershed. (By conducting a web search using the terms 'stormwater' and 'town name' you will be able to find a wealth of information as demonstrated by sites in the communities of Belmont and Cambridge.)
- Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection website contains state level regulations and programs relating to water quality.
- US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Mystic River Initiative website details ongoing regulation development, existing regulations and enforcement actions, work, science, meetings and collaborations.