Every organization creates, what can seem to be, a daunting list of acronyms that become familiar to those who work with them on a regular basis, but create a barrier to understanding for those who do not. This is just as true with conservation and wildlife habitat restoration groups.

To help those who can get lost in this alphabet soup of letters (which can also include those of us who have been dealing with them for many years!) we provide this list, compiled by the Mass Bays Program, of acronyms commonly used in local conservation, along with their meanings.

8TGM - Eight Towns and the Great Marsh Committee
APCC - Association to Preserve Cape Cod
CCMP - Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan
CRC - Coastal Resources Committee (Barnstable County)
CRE - Climate Ready Estuaries
CZM - Office of Coastal Zone Management
DCR - Department of Conservation and Recreation
DEP - Department of Environmental Protection
DER - Department of Ecological Restoration
DMF - Division of Marine Fisheries
DNR - Department of Natural Resource
EEA - Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs
EPA - Environmental Protection Agency
GOM - Gulf of Main
GOMI - Gulf of Main Institute
GOMC - Gulf of Maine Council
LID - Low Impact Development
MAS - Massachusetts Audubon Society
MBP - Massachusetts Bays Program
MET - Massachusetts Environmental Trust
MIT - Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MVPC - Merrimack Valley Planning Commission
MAPC - Metropolitan Area Planning Commission
MWRA - Massachusetts Water Resources Agency
NDA -No Discharge Area
NEANS - Northeast Aquatic Nuisance Species
NEP - National Estuary Program
NOAA - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NPDES - National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System
NPS - Non-point source pollution
NSRWA - North and South Rivers Watershed Association
QAPP - Quality Assurance Project Plan
RPA - Regional Planning Agency
RSP - Regional Service Provider
SSCW - Salem Sound Coastwatch
TNC - The Nature Conservancy
UNH - University of New Hampshire

USFWS - United States Fish & Wildlife Service