Westford Tree & Invasive Species Plan
In July 2021, the town received an MVP Action Grant from the state to complete the "Westford Tree and Invasive Species Inventory and Management Plan with Tree Planting Plan". The scope and timeline can be seen here.
Project goals include:
- Undertake a Street Tree and Invasive Species Inventory.
- Undertake a Tree and Invasive Species Management Plan.
- Protect and invest in keeping Westford populated with trees. Develop a tree planting program (that considers power line locations) and allocate more resources towards the Tree Warden role.
- Working with qualified professionals, develop a list and standard of plantings that are appropriate for use within the Town of Westford, including species of trees, shrubs, ground cover, etc. (more native species, less grass) with minimum caliper/height or other planting requirements (e.g., species diversity)
- Address heat island effects and increase resiliency by adjusting planting requirements (e.g., native plants, less grass, etc.)
- Encourage or require development to plant larger and more trees, and maintain their health for longer than currently required.
- Educate municipal staff, elected and appointed officials, and the public about invasive species, using native species, and best lawn maintenance practices including timing mowing to protect pollinators and nesting for certain species.
- For higher density areas (e.g., villages), add trees and stormwater improvements.
The Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness grant program (MVP) provides support for cities and towns in Massachusetts to begin the process of planning for climate change resiliency and implementing priority projects. The state awards communities with funding to complete vulnerability assessments and develop action-oriented resiliency plans, including updating the town's Hazard Mitigation Plan. Westford completed the MVP Report. In September 2020, Westford was designated as an MVP Community. In January 2022, the Select Board approved the updated Hazard Mitigation Plan, and in February 2022 FEMA approved it effective through February 2027.
About the MVP Program
- MVP website
- MVP Action Grant Program
- MVP Core Principles
- Toolkits based on MVP Core Principles
- Executive Order No. 569: Establishing an Integrated Climate Change Strategy for the Commonwealth
Climate Change, Climate Data, and Sustainability
- Resilient MA: Climate Change Map Viewer
- Resilient MA: Climate Data Grapher
- MA 2020 Environmental Justice Block Group Viewer
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
- National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Climate Change FAQs
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Climate Change FAQs
- Nature Conservancy Climate Change FAQs
- Future Learn: 50 of the Biggest FAQs about Sustainability
- Chemical Safety and Climate Change Preparedness
- Mitigating Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Plants, Animals, Insects, and Invasive Species
- Grow Native Massachusetts: Plant Lists & Landscape Guides
- Native Plant Trust, Go Botany
- Go Botany Tool for Identifying Plants
- MA Prohibited Plant List
- Massachusetts BioMap
- What is Biodiversity?
- Mass Audubon: Nature & Wildlife Information
- Mass Audubon: Nature & Wildlife FAQs
- US Fish & Wildlife Service: Invasive Species Information
- US Fish & Wildlife Service: Invasive Species FAQs
- National Wildlife Federation: Invasive Species Information
- National Wildlife Federation: Find Native Plant Species by Zip Code
- Arbor Day Foundation
- Arbor Day Foundation: Tree Care Tips & Techniques
- USDA Tree Owner's Manual
- Trees Are Good
- DRG National Tree Benefit Calculator
- Tree Regulations Resources
- MA General Laws (MGL) Shade Tree Regulations
For more information on the Tree & Invasive Species Plan or the MVP Grant Program, please contact:
Jeffrey Morrissette, Director of Land Use Management; 978-692-5524; firstname.lastname@example.org