Policy & Advocacy
The Ipswich River Watershed Association is an organization of citizens like you. Together, we are the voice of the river!
Every year, government officials make decisions about water use, park funding, wastewater treatment, environmental law enforcement, and other matters. Add those decisions up, and they go a long way towards determining how clean and healthy the river will be in years to come.
IRWA’s policy and advocacy efforts focus on ensuring that state water policies, water withdrawal permits, and regulatory decisions are protective of ecosystem health and include prudent water conservation measures. IRWA also comments on proposed projects that have a significant potential to impact the Ipswich River.
The Advocacy Campaign, while very challenging and expensive for IRWA, has been necessary to achieve improved river protection. At the same time, IRWA recognizes the need and welcomes the opportunity to work collaboratively with the watershed communities to restore and protect the river through its river restoration programs. Click here for a description of IRWA’s advocacy program.
Get to know the Issues of the Ipswich River:
For more information about the Advocacy Campaign, please contact Wayne Castonguay.
Sustainable Management Management Initiative
“Swimmie” is the nickname for the state’s “Sustainable Water Management Initiative” (SWMI). This is a major effort by the state environmental agencies to develop a better way to allocate and protect the state’s water. The overall goal, from IRWA’s perspective, is to have enough clean water for both people and the environment. To learn more about the initiative, click here.
State Agency Officials
There are many state agencies and commissions whose responsibilities and authorities touch the Ipswich River:
- Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs
- Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
- Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation
- Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management
- Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries
- Massachusetts Water Resources Commission
Town bodies — Boards of Selectmen, Planning Boards, Zoning Boards of Appeals, and Conservation Commissions, as well as Departments of Public Works — make decisions every day that affect the river and its water. Here are the websites for cities and towns that are located within the Ipswich River Watershed and/or use the Ipswich River for water supplies:
- North Andover
- North Reading