IPSWICH — Town Manager Anthony Marino and Water and Wastewater Director Vicki Halmen are pleased to announce the Town of Ipswich has been awarded a state grant to support climate change resilience.
The town was awarded $117,803 through the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Action Grant program, which offers financial resources to municipalities that are seeking to advance priority climate adaptation actions to address climate change impacts resulting from extreme weather, sea level rise, inland and coastal flooding, severe heat and other climate impacts.
The grant will support a portion of a $2.5 million project — the Ipswich River Sewer Interceptor Bank Biostabilization Project — which will use sustainable, environmentally-friendly methods to stabilize a portion of the bank of the Ipswich River near the Green Street Bridge, where severe erosion threatens a major sewer line.
“We are grateful for this funding that will help us protect our infrastructure and local environment from pollution and extreme weather,” Town Manager Marino said. “Projects of this magnitude can be challenging to execute without state and federal assistance, and this grant will help us protect the future of the Ipswich River and our community.”
The project will use biostabilization methods — using plants and other sustainable methods to stabilize the soil in the area — to shore up the riverbank and protect critical infrastructure from climate hazards and minimize risk to local beaches and shellfish beds.
The Wastewater Department will also host educational workshops for the Council on Aging and Ipswich High School Environmental Science students as part of the project.
“This project will pay dividends for both our community and the river, while also giving us a chance to provide an educational opportunity for Ipswich residents young and old,” Director Halmen said. “We look forward to moving ahead with this work.”
The project also benefited from another MVP Action Grant in 2020 — $18,945 for completing the design of the project. It should be completed by the end of this year.
The MVP grant program was created in 2017 by Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration to provide support for cities and towns in Massachusetts to identify climate hazards, assess vulnerabilities, and develop action plans to improve resilience to climate change. As part of the program, municipalities can apply to receive planning or action grants. The program is offered by the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs.