Missisquoi River Basin Association

In 1994, a group of concerned citizens that lived in areas surrounding the Missisquoi River Basin decided that they wanted to donate their time to restore the Missisquoi River. This organized group of citizens soon became a nonprofit group by the name of the Missisquoi River Basin Association (MRBA). The MRBA is now dedicated to their mission of restoring the Missisquoi River, all of its tributaries, and the Missisquoi Bay through community outreach, fieldwork, and the planting of trees within the river basin.

The MRBA performs community outreach in a multitude of ways, including traveling to local schools to teach children about the water quality within the Missisquoi River Watershed and holding events such as the Richford River Fest. Additionally, this group organizes volunteer workdays where community members can help plant trees around the river to improve water quality and help prevent erosion. In addition to community outreach, the MRBA carries out fieldwork to measure the health of the Missisquoi River.

Over the past nine years the MRBA has been collecting water samples from areas within the water basin to test for phosphorous, nitrogen, and turbidity levels. The data from these water samples document the changes in the river's water quality. This data combined with the MRBA's community outreach are working towards the ultimate conservation goal of the restoration of the Missisquoi River Basin.

Project Contact: Alisha Sawyer
Project Contact Email: mrba@pshift.com
Project Lifespan: 1994-present
Larger Geography: Missisquoi River Basin
forest_land, land_management, outreach, water, wetland
Project Accomplishments:

The Missisquoi River Basin Association has planted over 23,000 trees within the Missiquoi River watershed since the group's formation in 1994. These trees help prevent the excessive flow of run-off into the river and the occurrence of detrimental erosion. Additionally, the MRBA has collected and analyzed over 7,000 water samples from the watershed. This database of samples provides documentation of the Missisquoi River's water quality within the last nine years and can help form an understanding of current restoration issues.

Project Partners:

United States Fish and Wildlife Service
Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department
Vermont Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation
Local Municipalities
Local Schools

Critical to Success:

The continued funding for projects and events held by the MRBA is critical to the ability of the organization, as a whole, to move forward with their mission of restoring the Missisquoi River Basin. Additionally, the engagement of the community around the issue of water quality allows the MRBA's public outreach events, such as tree plantings, to gain continued support and enthusiasm.


Due to the non-profit nature of the MRBA, gaining funding for different community events and fieldwork is a major challenge.