The Watershed Association has embarked on a program to remove small dams from streams around the watershed, to re-connect and restore the function and health of our river system. By removing small dams (over 115 exist in our watershed!), we: Restore opportunities for fish and other aquatic wildlife to travel longer stream lengths; to pass […]
Before we can restore fish passage past the Baker and the Tileston & Hollingsworth Dams, the PCB-contaminated sediments that have accumulated behind each dam must be cleaned up.
Dam removal would greatly expand fishing opportunities. Boating which is currently blocked by the dams would be safer and considerably more enjoyable, and the safety of those recreating along the banks of the river would be enhanced. Removing the dams also would change the appearance of the river as seen from the perspective of those […]
Neither the Baker Dam nor the Tileston & Hollingsworth Dam is used to generate hydropower, nor are they likely to be used to do so in the future. The characteristics of these sites are not conducive to generating power in this day and age.
Modifying or removing both the Baker and the Tileston & Hollingsworth Dams would open up passage for migratory fish to swim between the fresh water of the Neponset River and its tributaries, the brackish water of the Neponset Estuary, and the salt water of Boston Harbor.
Representatives of neighborhood groups and civic associations have been brought together to consider alternatives for restoring the Lower Neponset River.
The health of the Lower Neponset River is complicated by the contamination of its sediments with PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls), in the area downstream of Mother Brook, in Hyde Park, Mattapan, Dorchester and Milton.
The Neponset River has a long and rich industrial history, the remainders of which we continue to experience today.
The Baker Dam at Lower Mills causes increased flooding, and the T&H Dam upstream serves no meaningful flood control purpose. Removing these two dams would reduce flooding on the Lower Neponset River.
Over the last 30 years, pollution in the Neponset River has been reduced, the buildings along its shores have been converted to residential and commercial rather than industrial use, and its banks have been improved for recreation. All of these changes have dramatically increased the river’s importance as an aesthetically pleasing backdrop that people […]
Exotic, invasive species bring turmoil to a natural system; they can out compete native species and reproduce vastly, taking over a significant swathe of the ecosystem in a short time, changing the structure and composition of wildlife habitat, reducing diversity of species, and even changing the availability and make-up of water resources. Over the years, […]
Land use along the Neponset River has had a lengthy and colorful history—from industrial to residential land use, commerce to quarrying. Many of these activities significantly have affected the health of the Neponset Estuary salt marshes. In fact, Boston Harbor Watershed salt marshes have dwindled since the arrival of European colonists. Much of Boston’s marshes […]
November 2010 Purple Loosestrife Biocontrol Project Update In 2010, Beetle Ranching volunteers from around the Neponset River Watershed and beyond carefully raised Galerucella calmariensis & G. pusilla beetles for this project to reduce exotic, invasive Purple loosestrife in the Fowl Meadow wetlands, Brookwood Farm, and at adjacent wetland areas. Over the years, these beetles and […]
October 2011 Project Update In 2011, we raised Purple loosestrife biological control (“biocontrol”) beetles (Galerucella calmariensis and G. pusilla) to treat Purple loosestrife in the northern Fowl Meadow wetlands and in nearby Brookwood Farm, in quantities guided by recommendations from project advisor the Massachusetts Department of Ecological Restoration (DER). Our goal has been to produce […]
The Lower Neponset River restoration project presents a unique opportunity to continue the revitalization of neighborhoods along the river by making the Neponset cleaner, more accessible, and closer to its natural condition. Since the 1970s, an extraordinary improvement in the water quality of the Neponset River has occurred. Untreated industrial wastewater discharges and sewer […]
As you travel downstream from the Neponset Reservoir in Foxboro, you notice Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots and New England Revolution. It was during the Stadium’s construction that almost one-third-mile of “dead” Neponset River was brought back to life. For more than four decades, two sections of the Neponset River had been […]
Our goals are to mitigate ecological degradation, restore higher levels of native species diversity, and improve wildlife habitat in the watershed. Projects include: Dam Removal One simple way to improve the ecological function of a waterway is to remove the man-made structures that impede its functions. Reducing Stormwater Pollution One of the main culprits of […]
One simple way to improve the ecological function of a waterway is to remove the man-made structures that impede its functions. These structures often consist of old dams that no longer serve their purpose, and culverts that are undersized, poorly designed, and/or malfunctioning. Read about: Lower Neponset River Restoration Program The Lower Neponset River restoration […]
The Watershed Association and the Mass. Department of Conservation & Recreation - South Region collaborated on a five-year project to reduce exotic, invasive Purple loosestrife in the Fowl Meadow and Blue Hills Reservation, to improve native biodiversity and wildlife habitat.