Photo of Greens Point by Bill Congdon

Please leave comments at the end of this page about how we as individuals or as a town can work to protect the environment.


  • Ipswich enters five-year, energy use reduction plan: The Select Board and the Finance Committee voted unanimously to join the Massachusetts Green Communities Program on May 6, 2019. Ipswich is expected to receive an initial grant of about $146,000 for efficiency updates to the town’s electrical use and can apply for up to $250,000 per year to pay for additional conservation measures. All of the town’s streetlights were converted to LED bulbs.
  • Ipswich Electric Department Fact Sheet: The Electric Light Department provides energy to the Town of Ipswich through three different methods: ownership of generation, long term contracts, and day-ahead purchases on the open market. Diversifying the energy portfolio in this manner reduces risk and provides stable and reasonable rates. Examining the ownership portion of the energy portfolio, it can be seen that Ipswich is 56% sourced by carbon-free generation. These assets include partial ownership shares in Berkshire Wind Farm, Ipswich Wind I, Seabrook Nuclear Power Station, Millstone Nuclear Power Station, and a series of hydro projects throughout New England. The remainder of the energy portfolio is comprised of long term contracts and open market purchases, both of which draw from the regional fuel mix.
  • Ipswich electric distributive generation policy: The Town of Ipswich Electric Light Department will enter into net metering agreements with customer-generators owning solar, wind, hydroelectric, or combined heat and power to generate electric power. Residential customers who install a solar PV system may also be eligible to receive a one-time rebate to help with the up-front cost of installation. Customers with systems installed after June 20, 2017 receive 10 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) for their excess generation. “Behind the meter” generation should not exceed 90% of their average load. The cumulative limit for new net metered distributed generation is 500 kilowatts (DC). The purpose of this limit is to avoid an uncontrolled growth, which could jeopardize the integrity of the local electric system.


  • Ipswich Recycles: Visit the Ipswich Recycles and Composts Facebook page.
  • Curbside composting: The Ipswich Waste Reduction Advisory Committee, in conjunction with the Department of Public Works, encourages residents to participate in this curbside food waste collection.
  • Waste Reduction Advisory Committee: The mission and purpose of the Committee is to establish and administer the Town’s recycling plan, and develop programs to meet the overall waste reduction needs of the entire community.
  • Ipswich Freecycle: The Freecycle Network is a grassroots nonprofit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns and neighborhoods. It’s all about reuse and keeping good stuff out of landfills. Each local group is moderated by local volunteers.

Town of Ipswich

Ipswich River

  • Ipswich River Watershed Association: The Ipswich River Watershed Association works in partnership with communities, businesses, schools, and other organizations and residents to protect the river, to protect nature and make sure that there is enough clean water for people, fish and wildlife, today and for our children and theirs.
  • Ipswich River Resiliency and Coastal Bank Stabilization Project: The goals of the Project are to apply nature-based, sustainable shoreline techniques, slope stabilization, and stormwater improvements to address a section of currently eroding and undercut coastal bank along the Ipswich River.

Climate Change

  • Massachusetts Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2020: The Global Warming Solutions Act of 2008 (GWSA) requires the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) to update its plan for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions once every five years. This 2015 update to the Massachusetts Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2020 addresses that requirement by describing policies that the Baker-Polito Administration will rely on to ensure that emission reductions required by the GWSA are achieved by 2020. Taken together, these policies provide a comprehensive strategy that addresses nearly all sources of GHG emissions in the Commonwealth.
  • 2011 Ipswich Climate Action Plan: The Climate Action Plan (Plan) for Ipswich, MA was prepared by the Commission on Energy Use and Climate Protection (Commission) to meet Ipswich’s commitment to the Cities for Climate Protection (CCP) process, and will guide Ipswich through a transition over the next decade to a more sustainable energy future. Specifically, the Board of Selectmen unanimously adopted a GHG emissions reduction target of 10% below 1990 levels by 2020.
  • 2017 Ipswich Climate Action Plan Update: The Climate Change Committee (CCC) was appointed by the Town Moderator after approval of the Annual Town Meeting article in May 2016. The purpose and responsibilities of the CCC included reviewing progress that has been made in implementing the Ipswich Climate Action Plan (CAP), reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the municipal government sector, and identifying new recommendations that were not considered or available at the time the CAP was prepared in 2011.
  • Massachusett Climate Change Projections 2018: Researchers from the Northeast Climate Science Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst developed downscaled projections for changes in temperature, precipitation, and sea level rise for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, based on simulations from the latest generation of climate models from the International Panel on Climate Change and scenarios of future greenhouse gas emissions.
  • 2019 Ipswich Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Plan: In 2018, the Town of Ipswich applied for and was granted a MVP Planning grant which funded a full day Community Resilience Building (CRB) Workshop on February 5, 2019. The summary of findings from this CRB Workshop and a follow-up Listening Session, held for the public on March 27, 2019, are included within this report.
  • Argilla Road Adaptation Project: The Argilla Road project will protect vital road access with nature-based, green infrastructure approaches to help protect the road from increased flooding and climate change impacts.

The Great Marsh

  • The Great Marsh restoration project: Marshes serve as important habitats for sea life that support the local ecosystem and seafood economy and provide a natural flood barrier to protect neighboring communities. The project aims to fortify 300 acres along Old Town Hill and two other Trustees sites in Essex and Ipswich. Over time historic ditching processes have compromised the resilience of the marsh by destroying its natural draining process, leaving it increasingly vulnerable to floods. In order to ‘heal’ these ditches, the Trustees and partners will use an innovative, nature-based method of “ditch remediation”
  • Great Marsh Barriers Assessment: This report summarizes work conducted as part of the Great Marsh Barriers Assessment, component of a multifaceted project led by the National Wildlife Federation Northeastern Massachusetts Resiliency Project, funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation through the Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resiliency Competitive Grant Program and included five separate sub-projects aimed to increase the resiliency of the Great Marsh and the Parker-Ipswich-Essex Rivers Restoration Partnership region.

On this site

Peat wagon The Peat Meadows - Deep in Willowdale State Forest is a bog which in the 1832 Ipswich map is the "Peat Meadows." "Turf" as it was also called, became a commonly-used fuel when local forests were depleted and until anthracite coal became widely available.… Continue reading The Peat Meadows
The missing dunes at Castle Neck - The "Great Dune" at the end of Castle Neck has disappeared, the point is retreating, and the opening to Essex Bay between Castle Neck and Wingaersheek Beach has widened.… Continue reading The missing dunes at Castle Neck
Wind power from the Berkshires lights Ipswich homes - The Town of Ipswich is an investor in Berkshire Wind, an array of wind turbines on Brodie Mountain in the Berkshires. Two turbines added this summer increased the generating capacity to 19.6 megawatts, enough for almost 9000 homes.… Continue reading Wind power from the Berkshires lights Ipswich homes
Ipswich Mills Dam Removal Feasibility Study Ipswich Mills Dam feasibility study - In 2010, the Ipswich Board of Selectmen voted to begin exploring removal of the Ipswich Mills Dam. The feasibility study was completed in March, 2019 and will set the stage for the Town's decision regarding the dam.… Continue reading Ipswich Mills Dam feasibility study
Projected sea level rise in Ipswich MA How will sea level rise affect Ipswich? - Sea levels rose about 8 inches globally and about 1 foot on the Eastern Seaboard in the past century. What will happen to Ipswich if  catastrophic predictions for the 21st Century are realized?… Continue reading How will sea level rise affect Ipswich?
Clark Pond Wildlife Conservation Area Ipswich MA A History of Clark Pond, Great Neck, Ipswich MA - Clark Pond was originally an intertidal salt marsh supported by fresh water sources draining from the surrounding hills and tidal salt water from the ocean. Around 1897, A. B. Clark built a stone dam at the northeast corner creating a fresh water pond for duck hunting and built gunning blinds into the bank.… Continue reading A History of Clark Pond, Great Neck, Ipswich MA
Rowley River clam flats The Highs & Lows of the Rowley River - Enjoy a fascinating hour-long virtual tour of the Rowley River with 4th-generation clammer and former Shellfish Constable Jack Grundstrum.… Continue reading The Highs & Lows of the Rowley River
Voices of the Great Marsh - This short videotape about the Great Marsh promotes the value of this resource and places it in the context of the historical landscape,… Continue reading Voices of the Great Marsh

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