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The Freshwater Initiative: Stakeholder Engagement

Stakeholder engagement is a critical component of planning processes, helping to build consensus on impactful recommendations and create actionable plans. Stakeholder engagement to inform the Cape Cod Freshwater Initiative continued in March, with the launch of a process to engage diverse perspectives in working groups organized by groundwater lenses. Cape Cod’s freshwater ponds are influenced by the groundwater lens within which they are located. Three working groups will be meeting over the next several months – one within the Sagamore lens area, one within the Monomoy lens area, and one that makes up the Nauset, Chequessett, Pamet, and Pilgrim lenses.

The first round of meetings was intended to provide stakeholders with an overview of the Freshwater Initiative, establish a shared understanding of freshwater systems, share data collection efforts, and obtain feedback and perspective on local observations about ponds and potential outcomes of the Freshwater Initiative.

Participants were asked to provide input on the qualities of ponds that are important to their work, what they value about ponds, what information they would like to know from the data, and what they hope the Freshwater Initiative will achieve.

During the second round of meetings, Commission staff shared research being conducted on pond remediation, restoration, and management strategies and sought input from stakeholders about the types of information necessary to support decision-making. Stakeholders were asked about their priorities for selecting a strategy, their perspectives on what drives decision-making and successful implementation of strategies, and what criteria are important for prioritizing ponds for evaluation and management. The third and final round of meetings will be held in June.

To learn more about the stakeholder process and view presentations and meeting summaries, please visit

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