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Location: 0 Rear Plymouth Street, Border of Carver and Plymouth, MA

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  • Owner:   Franklin Marsh Cranberry LLC-Gary Weston, Craig Weston of Carver MA. Operator: Ryco Excavating, Middleboro, MA

  • Volume of Earth Removed: Estimated at 2,494,913 cubic yards.

  • Permit: Plymouth Zoning Board of Appeals issued a permit in 2018 for 635,000 cubic yards for cranberry agriculture and then issued two extensions of the Permit. The Carver Earth Removal Committee issued a permit in March 2018 for 410,000 for cranberry agriculture. The permits from both Towns are expired and were unlawfully granted. An enforcement request was sent to Carver in 2022 and ignored. Operations are believed to be continuing as of mid-2023. The total permitted volume is 1,045,000 cubic yards. There has been no independent verification.

  • Area Impacted: 18 acres

  • Claimed Reason for Mining: Construction of cranberry bog reservoir and new bogs. There was no evidence that the reservoir is properly sized for the acres of bogs.

  • Solar: Yes, floating solar approved by Plymouth; “Float Lane Subdivision Plan” filed in Carver for ReWild Renewables (Portsmouth NH); application by Beals+Thomas.

  • Water Supply: Yes, near Plymouth Darby Pond Well.

  • Plymouth Carver Sole Source Aquifer: Yes. Extensive mining for sand and gravel in the Aquifer. In its 2018 application for an earth removal permit to Plymouth, Beals+Thomas/Franklin Marsh refused to answer the question: identify the “depth to groundwater.” Beals+Thomas stated “We respectfully request relief from performing such test pits [to show depth to groundwater] for the required earth removal to construct cranberry bogs and appurtenances.” Page 2-4. 3/2/18. Plymouth ZBA granted the waiver. There is no information about how deep into the Aquifer the mining operation is being done. There is no information about the hydrological impacts, changes in groundwater flow direction, loss of filtration capacity and nitrogen loading impacts for this massive mining operation. 

  • Wetlands and Waterways: Yes wetlands; MassDEP ruled in 2022 the mining is normal improvement of land in agricultural use and exempt from the Wetlands Protection Act. 

  • Archaeological Impacts: Likely. No assessment ever done despite proximity to known archeological sites on adjacent lands.

  • Environmental Justice Population: Unknown

  • Ecosystem: Abutting BioMap 2 Priority Habitat: Darby Pond. Likely altering the hydrologic regime of the pond.

  • Website Blog

  • Public Subsidies:

    • Plymouth used $800,000 in taxpayer funds to buy Franklin Marsh/Weston’s  18 acres of “old style bogs” on shores of Darby Pond – in exchange for Plymouth granting an earth removal permit so Franklin Marsh could build three acres of new bogs and the reservoir. This was a blatant ploy and insider deal that inaccurately  portrayed the commercial mining operation as “agriculture” and while enriching Gary and Craig Weston with $800,000 in public funds and permitting the removal of about $18 million in sand and gravel under permits from Plymouth and Carver..

    • Agriculture grants: Yes.

    • Solar subsidies/SMART program: Yes, for Floating Solar projects in Plymouth and Carver.

  • Who’s who: Gary Weston, one of the owner/operators of Franklin Marsh’s earth removal operation, has been the site manager/operator for the Federal Furnace Cranberry earth removal operation on Tremont Street in Carver (proposed for Syncartha Solar, mining in wetlands and the Aquifer). Craig Weston is the fire chief in Carver. Gary and Craig Weston are leasing their land on Main St. in Carver to Power Plus of Texas for a 150 MW Battery Storage Facility. Their relative, Elaine Weston, was Carver Earth Removal Committee secretary for many years, has herself obtained an earth removal permit with her husband Eric Weston under the name of North Weston Cranberry. See, 0 Plymouth Street Carver earth removal/solar project. Elaine Weston currently works as the assistant Town Administrator in the Town of Carver. 

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