Azorean scientists to describe efforts to protect Furnas Lake

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A group of scientists from the Azores will speak about the challenges of protecting and restoring Furnas Lake during a free public presentation hosted by the Buzzards Bay Coalition. The presentation will take place on Tuesday, April 2, at 6 p.m. at the Buzzards Bay Center, 114 Front Street in downtown New Bedford. Located on the island of Sao Miguel, Furnas Lake has experienced similar environmental problems to those faced in the Buzzards Bay region, including invasive species and poor land use planning leading to nutrient pollution in the water. To reverse this environmental damage and restore the lake’s ecosystem, the Furnas Lake Watershed Plan was created in 2000. Since 2007, the area has made great strides in creating vegetated buffers around the lake, which reduce pollution and protect the landscape of Furnas village. The scientists – Miguel Caetano Ferreira, Raquel Caetano Ferreira and Malgorzata Pietrzak, all of the Furnas Monitoring and Research Centre – are visiting Massachusetts in part to establish relationships with similar restoration groups such as the Buzzards Bay Coalition, and to share ideas, methods and strategies regarding environmental restoration, outreach and land conservation. During their time in the New Bedford area, the scientists will receive a tour of the Acushnet Sawmill and LaPalme Farm, two Bay Coalition properties in Acushnet that are being preserved and restored to protect the health of the Acushnet River. For more information about the presentation, contact Sara Quintal, restoration ecologist with the Buzzards Bay Coalition, at (508) 999-6363 x225 or quintal@savebuzzardsbay.org.  

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