"A Unique Program To Assist in Environmentally Sound Decision-Making"

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May 12, 2015
Welcome to the Connecticut Environmental Review Team Program Website.
A program of the Connecticut Resource Conservation and Development Areas: Eastern CT and King’s Mark. The Connecticut Environmental Review Team Program provides assistance to all Connecticut municipalities and Land Trusts in meeting the challenges of land use decision making.

CT ERT assists municipalities and land trusts, at no cost, in the review of projects with an emphasis on open space, natural resource and agricultural planning, by coordinating a group of environmental professionals drawn from a variety of federal, state, regional and local agencies and consultants to form multidisciplinary environmental study teams. CT ERT provides state and federal grant information and grant assistance for open space/natural resource projects after the completion of an ERT review and /or independent of a previous ERT. CT ERT provides technical assistance in the form of a referral service in the coordination of meetings with local, state and federal agencies to all municipalities.



Earth Day Clip ArtHappy Earth Day!
As we celebrate the 45th Earth Day we are also celebrating the 46th year of the Connecticut Environmental Review Team (ERT). The ERT’s first review took place in 1969 in the town of Salem, Connecticut. The ERT started from an idea of the director of the Windham Regional Planning Agency and became a project of the Eastern CT RC&D Area with federal and state funding. Over the years support and involvement grew to include many federal, state, and local agencies, as well as volunteer individuals and consultants who act as team members. The ERT has reviewed and produced reports for over 1000 projects across the state that include development proposals and conservation and preservation of town and land trust properties.
I am also celebrating my 30th anniversary as the ERT coordinator. I was hired in April 1985 as the Eastern CT ERT coordinator and became the statewide coordinator (which included the western side of the state then known as the King’s Mark RC&D Area) in 1992. While our funding source has had many changes the support for the program continues as the program evolves and innovates to remain relevant and necessary to the towns and environmental needs of Connecticut. Our mission remains to provide assistance in meeting the challenges of land use decision making. I look forward to the continuation of the ERT and invite all to contact our office and use the resources we have available to make your town, our state and the world a better place!
Elaine Sych, ERT Coordinator

Southern Pine Beetle, an insect that is native in the southern United States has made it way north to Connecticut where it is not native.  While our native white pine (a “soft” pine) is not at risk, pitch pine and other “hard” pines are.  In its native range Southern Pine Beetle (Dendroctonus frontalis) infests and kills large stands of pine.

In Connecticut:

References for ID, control, and forest stand management:


2015 CLCC Conference - ERT Display

The 2015 ERT Display at the 31st Annual CLCC Annual Conference held at Wesleyan College in Middletown, CT.

Newington Project Update
Toll Brothers have dropped their residential building project “Newington Walk”. The project site was 74 acres on Cedar Mountain in Newington.  The ERT conducted two reviews for the town at the request of the conservation commission, the first in August of 2011, and then an update in December 2012 to address changes made to the plans. The reports can be viewed at The town will now negotiate with the property owners Tilcon to purchase the property for open space.

Land Trust Retreat for Advancement Initiative The ERT is a collaborative partner with the Connecticut Land Conservation Council (CLCC) and the Land Trust Alliance (LTA) with their CT Land Trust Advancement Initiative which is being funded by the USDA-NRCS. A land trust retreat was held on January 21st in Haddam to review and refine project ideas to significantly strengthen Connecticut's land trusts and their capacity to save the region's natural heritage, agricultural lands, and its high quality of life.The land trusts invited to participate are part of a regional conservation partnership in the lower CT river valley and coastal area. Bill Logue was the evening's facilitator, working with Amy Paterson (CLCC), Rebecca Washburn (LTA), Elaine Sych (ERT), Margo Burns (RiverCOG) and Kevin Case (LTA).

CT Land Trust Retreat for Advancement Initiative

ERT Team Members Wanted We are actively recruiting new ERT Team Members for the program. If you are interested please complete the form to your left under ERT Team Members.

Emerald Ash Borer (EAB)
The other big forestry topic is the emerald ash borer, now known to be in 15 towns (confirmed in: Prospect, Naugatuck, Bethany, Beacon Falls, Waterbury, Cheshire, Oxford, Middlebury, Hamden, North Branford, Southbury, Sherman, Southington, Watertown, Newtown) and the 4 western counties. The Tree Wardens Association had an excellent meeting in December (EAB management - A Municipal Approach) regarding managing for EAB - very eye-opening.

For additional information please see the CTDEEP website and the CT Agricultural Experiment station website. and

Connecticut Invasive Plant Working Group 2013 Annual Report Available
The 2013 CIPWG Annual Report is now available. The report includes general information about CIPWG and its members, the CIPWG website, meetings and workshops presented during the year, invasive plant pulling parties, and activities and events that CIPWG members organized or in which they participated. You can follow the link to view it on the CIPWG website at The Annual Report is also included in the Connecticut Invasive Plants Council Eleventh Annual Report.



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