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New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
DATE: July 14, 2009
CONTACT: Sally Soule, 603 559-0032

Exeter River Geomorphic Assessment and Watershed-based Plan Published

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services announces the completion of the Exeter River Geomorphic Assessment and Watershed-based Plan. The Exeter River Local Advisory Committee (ERLAC) developed the Plan with technical assistance from the DES, Bear Creek Environmental, and Fitzgerald Environmental. The plan provides scientific information to guide local efforts to restore and protect the Exeter River.

The plan is based in the science of fluvial geomorphology, the study of how rivers and landforms interact over time through different climatic conditions. The plan identifies stable and unstable river reaches and provides site-specific management recommendations for river reaches susceptible to flooding, erosion or river channel adjustment. The plan also provides tools for managing fluvial erosion hazard zones. ERLAC is currently working to with local partners to develop and implement projects to address recommendations outlined in the plan.

"The plan will help ERLAC and towns in the Exeter River watershed with efforts to protect and restore the physical integrity of the Exeter River, to protect water quality and wildlife habitat," according to Don Clement, ERLAC Chairman.

The Exeter River watershed is located in southeastern New Hampshire and spans fifteen towns. The watershed area covers 109 square miles. The river originates in the towns of Raymond and Chester and then flows easterly for approximately 32 miles before flowing into the tidal zone of the Squamscott River in the town of Exeter. The Exeter River is one of fifteen rivers in New Hampshire designated for greater protection of outstanding natural and cultural resources under the State’s Rivers Management and Protection Act.

For more information about the plan and local implementation efforts, please contact Sally Soule, DES Coastal Watershed Supervisor, (603) 559-0032 or sally.soule@des.nh.gov. To access a copy of the plan, please visit: http://des.nh.gov/organization/divisions/water/wmb/was/watershed_based_plans.htm

Funding to develop the plan was provided in part by the Town of Exeter and through grants from DES with funding from the US Environmental Protection Agency under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act and through the New Hampshire Coastal Program pursuant to an award from the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration. Funding was also provided by the DES Source Water Protection Program.

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