The Mystic River Made the Grade: A-

Go Out and Enjoy Your River & Lakes!

Together with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Mystic River Watershed Association issued the 2017 Water Quality Report Card for the Mystic River watershed yesterday at Rivers Edge on the Malden River.

The report card included some great news; the Mystic River and the Mystic Lakes continue to have clean water--earning a grade of A-. There was also good news for Medford--with Meetinghouse Brook going from a C- in 2015 up to a B in 2017.

“Clean water is a team sport,” said Patrick Herron, Executive Director of the Mystic River Watershed Association. “We depend on our water quality volunteers that go out every month to collect this data and our municipal partners and agencies like the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA), the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), who help us act on this data.”

The report card helps community members know it is safe to row and kayak on the Mystic and swim in Upper Mystic Lake, and it also pinpoints where we need to make improvements. To quote Fred Laskey, Executive Director of MWRA, “Let the data and science tell us where we are and where we should be going.”  Areas such as Winn’s Brook, Mill Creek, and Alewife Brook received D’s or F’s this year and represent locations where infrastructure improvements are needed. In one positive step forward, the Town of Belmont will be making significant improvements in the coming year to their stormwater infrastructure, and this should have a positive impact on water quality in tributaries to Alewife Brook.

Like clean water, the report card is a group effort, and we are happy to collaborate with the EPA, MWRA, and DEP to make improvements in local water quality. This work would not be possible without our dedicated team of citizen scientists, who take water samples at 15 locations throughout the watershed each month to gather this important data.

  From Left to Right: Martin Suuberg, Commissioner of MassDEP, Patrick Herron, Executive Director of Mystic River Watershed Association, Fred Laskey, Executive Director of MWRA, Mayor Stephanie Burke of Medford, Alexandra Dunn, Regional Administrator US EPA, Wade Blackman of Congresswoman Katherine Clark’s office, Tom Philbin and Tony Sousa both from the City of Everett   

From Left to Right: Martin Suuberg, Commissioner of MassDEP, Patrick Herron, Executive Director of Mystic River Watershed Association, Fred Laskey, Executive Director of MWRA, Mayor Stephanie Burke of Medford, Alexandra Dunn, Regional Administrator US EPA, Wade Blackman of Congresswoman Katherine Clark’s office, Tom Philbin and Tony Sousa both from the City of Everett 

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