Nature Conservancy in Massachusetts statement in response to today’s state announcement of funds for dam removal and repair

$13.5 million in funds will help communities restore rivers.

January 13, 2014

The Nature Conservancy in Massachusetts applauds the Legislature and the Patrick administration for supporting policy and funding for dam removal. The $13.5 million in funds announced this morning are an important step forward in the state's ongoing collaboration with communities to restore their rivers.

These funds will help communities remove or repair aging dams and coastal infrastructure, improving the ecological health of our coasts and rivers and the safety and economic vitality of our communities.

Just over one year ago, legislation to provide funding to remove dams that are obsolete or unsafe was passed, following months of collaboration among local leaders, conservation organizations and associations representing municipalities, water suppliers and engineers.

Massachusetts has roughly 3,000 dams – 85 percent of which no longer serve their intended purpose and many of which are unsafe due to their location and condition. Today, $5.9 million fund awarded mark the first of the grants and loans for dam removal and repair as a result of this this new Dam and Seawall Repair and Removal Fund.

Massachusetts has been a leader in dam removal and this new funding will help us continue to remove obsolete and unsafe dams.

Removing obsolete dams provides economic benefits such as reducing risks from flooding, achieving water quality goals for municipalities and restoring healthy rivers for robust fisheries, freshwater recreation and angling.

- Steve Long, Director of Government Relations, The Nature Conservancy in Massachusetts

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at unprecedented scale, and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in more than 65 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

Contact information

Misty Edgecomb
Senior Media Relations Manager
The Nature Conservancy in Massachusetts
(617) 532-8317

James Miller
Media Relations Manager
The Nature Conservancy in Massachusetts
(857) 600-6603

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