Monthly e-news from Charles River Watershed Association, an internationally-recognized leader in sustainable river management. Learn more at .  
Around the Watershed
The Commonwealth Takes Further Climate Action
On January 18, the Baker-Polito Administration announced a plan to spend $1 billion over the next ten years to help cities and towns address climate resilience. The National Climate Assessment , released in November 2018, gave dire predictions for the Northeast : more extreme precipitation events, recurring flooding, more heat-related deaths, evacuated and displaced populations; all of these impacts will be exacerbated by our aging infrastructure water, sewer, stormwater and transportation. This means cities and towns are on the front lines when it comes to protecting public health and safety in the climate change era. CRWA applauds Governor Baker for recognizing the need to invest in climate resilience, and we are launching a program to help educate local decision-makers within the Charles River watershed about strategies municipalities can deploy to use natural systems to build resilience. This will ensure that the new monies being made available are well spent.
Clif Bar Family Foundation Grant
We are proud to share that the Clif Bar Family Foundation awarded CRWA a $2,500 grant to support citizen and student engagement with our water quality monitoring program on the Charles River. We are honored to receive this award and thank the Clif Bar Family Foundation for recognizing the importance of engaging the community in understanding and improving local waterways. Overseeing a river that stretches 80 miles and a watershed that spans 308 square miles takes a village. With with CRWA’s small staff, our vital work would not be possible without our volunteer monitors. In 2018 alone, CRWA citizen scientists collected over 650 water samples from across the watershed!

Flagging Program Water Quality Results
Though water sampling for CRWA’s Water Quality Notification (Flagging) Program has not yet started for 2019, our science staff is hard at work analyzing recent trends in bacteria levels in the Lower Basin. Since 2013, our Longfellow Bridge sampling site consistently has had the best water quality, and the North Beacon Street site has had the poorest water quality. While the highest bacteria concentrations occur immediately following rain, CRWA’s data show that dry-weather bacteria concentrations have been rising at all sampling sites since 2014. Elevated bacteria levels between rainfall events make conditions less safe for dry-weather recreation. This may be due to rising water temperatures and/or more frequent rainfall, both of which are indicative of changing climate patterns.  
Newton Greenway Project
CRWA Executive Director Emily Norton recently spoke at the Newton Free Library about creating greenways and bike paths in the vicinity of the Riverside Green Line stop in Newton, along with Herb Nolan of the Solomon Foundation and Dan Driscoll, Department of Conservation and Recreation Director of Recreational Facilities and Planning. Creating these greenways will be challenging due to the highways and rail lines, but there are options for parkland that would create much more accessibility to the river. The event was standing room only, demonstrating the strong community interest.
Millis Joins the MVP Grant Program
Millis community leaders came together on January 8th to assess and discuss their town’s resources and vulnerabilities under the Commonwealth’s Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness grant program (MVP). CRWA enjoyed partnering with the Town’s Police Dept., Town Planner, Dept. of Public Works, and many others. We look forward to working with more watershed towns on MVP workshops!

All Massachusetts towns are eligible to apply for this grant program . Once complete, towns become MVP communities and are eligible for MVP action grants to implement solutions.
Moonlight Apres-Ski Party
Charles River Watershed Association hosted a ski party under the full moon at the Weston Ski Track on Saturday, February 2. Over thirty young professionals came together to ring in the snow season over cider sangria and games. The ski night raised over $800 to support programs like water quality monitoring, an invasive milfoil project, and municipal trainings for climate resiliency.

Special thanks to Nitsch Engineering and Weston Ski Track for their donations of food and trail passes.
Invasive Plant Removal Program Volunteer Coordinator
CRWA is looking for an energetic outdoors enthusiast to serve as the part-time, seasonal volunteer coordinator for our Invasive Aquatic Plant Removal Program, Canoeing for Clean Water. Through this program, volunteers in canoes hand-pull invasive water chestnut from the Lakes District in Newton and Waltham while also learning about the river and nutrient pollution. The volunteer coordinator will work 8 to 24 hours each week from May to August, with most of the hours in July.

Spring Intern Spotlight
Cameron Bechmann, Watershed Science

“While at CRWA I hope to learn in great detail the full processes of water quality assessment and planning: from how the samples are taken, to how best to battle urban water pollution.”

Cameron is graduating from Brandeis University this spring with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and has studied abroad at the Danish Institute of Scandinavia: Copenhagen. He has organized the Brandeis Global Youth Summit, volunteered for Blue Water Baltimore, and forged new pathways as a Brandeis Senate Sustainability Committee member.
Michaela Fusaro, Geographic Informations Systems (GIS)

“I hope to hone my skills and gain more experience in the GIS field through my internship at CRWA.”

Michaela graduated from Westfield State University last spring cum laude with a B.S. in Environmental Science, a minor in Regional Planning, and a GIS certification. Her capstone project studied the “Effects of Hemlock Woolly Adelaid on Headwater Stream Quality.” She has worked as a Teacher Naturalist for Mass Audubon and traveled to Costa Rica to practice field science.
Dalanna Newton, Cleanup Coordination

“During my time at CRWA, I hope to be able to learn more about what it takes to organize an event that is on the scale of the Charles River Cleanup and truly make a difference in my community.”

Dalanna is a student at Lasell College working towards a B.A. in Humanities with a minor in Spanish and is interested in community building and environmental education. She has interned with HasNa, where she managed marketing and grant writing, and participated in Lasell’s Shoulder to Shoulder Ecuador program, where she learned about Ecuador's biodiversity and sustainable agriculture.
Want to be a CRWA Intern or know an exceptional candidate? Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Learn more.
Upcoming Events
53 rd Annual Meeting , THURSDAY, MARCH 28
Save the date for CRWA’s 53 rd Annual Meeting. The Reception is 5:30PM to 6:30PM with a cash bar and sit-down dinner. The business portion of the meeting will start promptly at 6:30. Registration opens this week.

20 th Annual Earth Day Charles River Cleanup , SATURDAY, APRIL 27
Our Annual Earth Day Charles River Cleanup brings together over 3,000 volunteers each year to pick up litter, remove invasive species and assist with park maintenance. The Annual Earth Day Charles River Cleanup builds on a national effort as part of American Rivers’ National River Cleanup®, which to date, has removed over 25 million pounds of trash from America’s waterways. Registration will open mid-February. Sponsorship available now.

37 th Annual Run of the Charles Canoe and Kayak Race , SUNDAY, APRIL 28
As CRWA's signature event, the  Run of the Charles  is the largest flat-bottomed boat race in New England and a major event in Greater Boston, where it draws over 1,500 racers and spectators! Our goal this year is to make  Run of the Charles  more sustainable and reduce the carbon footprint through some exciting new changes, including new courses and a Harpoon beer garden. Registration is now open!
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