Southeast New England Program Grants

Joseph Costa, executive director of the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program, addresses the audience at Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve.

Nearly 100 people came out in wind and rain to Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in East Falmouth Friday morning, October 11, to celebrate the announcement of $2.3 million in federal grants this year to protect southeastern New England watersheds.

This includes $1.1 million to projects in Rhode Island and $1.2 million to six municipalities, nonprofit organizations and academic institutions on Cape Cod and Buzzards Bay.

The first three grantees are Association to Preserve Cape Cod ($245,000 for the Three Bays Stormwater project), Buzzards Bay Coalition ($223,533 to promote salt marsh resilience) and Falmouth Rod & Gun Club ($245,000 to restore the Upper Childs River and bog).

The second three grantees are Massachusetts Maritime Academy ($176,581 for the Buzzards Bay Stormwater Collaborative), Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution ($298,598 to test permeable reactive barriers) and Buzzards Bay Coalition ($27,695 to prevent nutrient pollution from composting).

"In 2012, Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island led Congress in securing new funding to conserve and restore Southeast New England's coastal waters, watersheds and communities. Sen. Reed's vision led the US Environmental Protection Agency to develop the Southeast New England Program," the event's press kit said. "Now, Restore America's Estuaries is working with EPA to provide SNEP Watershed Grants, funding local organizations that are restoring clean water and healthy coastal ecosystems."

Speakers at the event included US Congressman William R. Keating (D-Massachusetts), representatives of US Senators Elizabeth A. Warren and Edward J. Markey, and the new regional director of the EPA, Dennis Deziel.

Attendees included Falmouth Town Manager Julian M. Suso, selectman Douglas C. Brown and members of the Falmouth Water Quality Management Committee.

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