Massachusetts Watershed Coalition


About The Massachusetts Watershed Coalition

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Mission and Goals

The Coalition works with community partners across Massachusetts. Our mission is the protection and restoration of watershed ecosystems to sustain healthy rivers, streams, lakes, water supplies, terrestrial and aquatic habitats. Formed in 1991, we have three primary goals:

  • Strengthen the work and knowledge of community groups;
  • Raise public awareness of land and water management issues;
  • Improve policies and decisions affecting rivers and their watersheds.


Formation of the Coalition led to the creation of the Massachusetts Watershed Initiative (MWI) in 1994. This program earned national acclaim by enabling greater collaboration among government agencies, businesses and environmental groups to help communities manage shared land and water resources. Public-private partnerships created by the MWI improved delivery of agency services and achieved more efficient use of local, state and federal resources.

The Coalition continues the community-based assistance that was central to the former Massachusetts Watershed Initiative. One focus is assisting towns to prevent and reverse the harmful impacts of storm-water runoff from community growth. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, MA Department of Environmental Protection and other researchers find that sprawl results in polluted waters. Community assistance to diminish local pollution problems is a priority for state and federal water policies.

We foster a small watershed approach to protect local streams. These small tributaries are the largest part of river systems. This approach combines watershed planning tools with low impact development to prevent pollution, remedy problems and renew community enjoyment of local waters.



MWC supplies guidance that is helping Massachusetts communities restore their balance with nature. The Coalition works with state and federal agencies and citizen groups to create public-private partnership projects across Massachusetts.

MWC works in partnership with Deborah Shriver Consulting, a MA certified Woman-owned Business Enterprise (WBE) for water resource planning and protection services. For more information:

Activities include:

  • Design of community land and water management programs;
  • Pilot projects to advance the science and tools needed to improve watershed stewardship;
  • Collaboration to protect and restore streams, lakes, water supplies, biodiversity and open spaces;
  • Consultation and referral on community education issues;
  • Information services that include a list serve and guidance materials;
  • Workshops on watershed protection, low impact development, stream restoration, and other topics of special interest to watershed groups, town boards, and state agencies.

More details about our services are described on the Community Help page.

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