Camden, being on the coast, is especially vulnerable to the effects of climate change such as sea-level rise, flood risk from unpredictable and increased precipitation, and a decrease in natural resources such as fisheries. One focal point of climate change planning is the Megunticook River watershed, since it is susceptible to erosion, pollution, and flooding.
Many of these issues are exacerbated by climate change as well as by increased development throughout the watershed, but the need to plan for mitigating these effects also creates opportunities. Significant funding is available to coastal communities like ours if we can implement solutions that also benefit fish and other wildlife, such as restoring our shorelines, riverbanks, and wetlands to make them more natural and resilient to climate change.
The Town of Camden, in collaboration with Midcoast Conservancy and other partners, wants your help and vision as we plan for the future of the Megunticook River watershed.
Issues that the watershed faces include an increase in total annual rainfall and the intensity of storm events, increased pavement and other impermeable surfaces (meaning less water seepage into the ground and increased river levels after rain), pollution from uncontrolled erosion, fertilizers, pesticides, road salt, and other runoff, and lack of connectivity for wildlife habitat.
Homes and businesses along the shores and nearby are at risk of flooding. There are steps we can be taken to mitigate these issues, and we want to hear your ideas!
Alison McKellar, a Camden Select Board member, and Hallie Arno, a student studying river restoration, will be holding a series of community conversations about the future of the watershed over zoom. They will begin with a presentation to learn more about the history of the watershed, where climate change vulnerabilities lie, and what the future may look like. They will then move into an open conversation, where you can ask questions, express concerns, and share what your priorities for the future of the watershed are. Meeting notes will be taken and shared to improve the quality of the feasibility studies and analyses being undertaken. This will be a series of discussions that will change and evolve based on participant feedback. Recordings will be archived and available on the Town of Camden website as well as the Midcoast Conservancy project page for the Megunticook River.
Sunday, March 21, 5-7 p.m.
Friday, March 26, 12-2 p.m .
Wednesday, March 31, 10 a.m.- noon
Please join us to learn more and share your voice on this important issue!