Greenfield, MA — This year, the Connecticut River Conservancy (CRC) has completed more than 20 river restoration projects across the 4-state Connecticut River watershed (NH, VT, MA & CT). These projects will restore natural river flow, improve wildlife habitat, and protect clean water. They also boosted local economies and local businesses like plant nurseries, tree planting crews, construction crews, engineering and design firms, and more.
“We are very proud of our restoration work and continue to build momentum with each successful project and each passing year,” said Ron Rhodes, Director of Restoration Programs at CRC. “Our team of partners, landowners, and funders work tirelessly for years to bring these projects to completion. These partnerships bring the benefits of clean water and healthy rivers to people and wildlife in all four states of the Connecticut River basin. Together, we have accomplished our goals for 2021 and look forward to an even more productive 2022.”
The river restoration projects completed by CRC in 2021 include:
- Removing useless “deadbeat” dams on Broad Brook in Guilford, VT; Turkey Hollow Brook in Windham, VT; and Sutton River in West Burke, VT;
- Restoring wetlands along the Connecticut River in Piermont, NH;
- Restoring four floodplains along the Cold River in Walpole, NH; the Ammonoosuc River in Lisbon, NH; and the Connecticut River in Colebrook, NH;
- Instream habitat restoration in small tributaries to the Waits River in Corinth, VT;
- Planting nearly 16,400 trees along rivers in 12 towns including Lisbon, Piermont, and Walpole, NH and Barnet, Bradford, Guilford, Lyndon, Newbury, Norwich, Strafford, West Fairlee and Woodstock, VT
- Construction of a living shoreline in Fenwick, CT where the CT River flows into Long Island Sound.
The dam removals this year have opened 27 miles of river by removing barriers for fish and other aquatic life to pass freely upstream. These other projects have also increased access to valuable floodplains, reduced erosion along 4.7 miles of stream habitat, and restored over 25 acres of riparian and floodplain habitat. In addition, the living shoreline project improved tidal flow, replaced a culvert, and restored 0.4 acres of tidal marsh and 500 feet of coastal beach.
CRC thanks their partners Intervale Conservation Nursery, New England Wetland Plants, Newbury Conservation Commission, Northwoods Stewardship Center, Passumpsic Valley Land Trust, and Redstart Forestry; and funders including CRC donors, Borough of Fenwick, Community Foundation of Middlesex County – Janvrin Fund for Wildlife, John T. and Jane A. Wiederhold Foundation, Lynde Point Land Trust, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, National Fish & Wildlife Foundation’s Long Island Sound Futures Fund, New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, One Tree Planted, Robert F. Schumann Foundation, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department, and Watersheds United Vermont.
Since 1952, Connecticut River Conservancy has been the voice for the Connecticut River watershed, from source to sea. They collaborate with partners across four states to protect and advocate for your rivers and educate and engage communities. They bring people together to prevent pollution, improve habitat, and promote enjoyment of your river and its tributary streams. Healthy rivers support healthy economies. To learn more about CRC, or to make a contribution to help protect your rivers, visit www.ctriver.org.