Losing Ground 2020: Statistics

Town of Essex

Sixth Edition

Published February 2020, Losing Ground: Nature's Value In A Changing Climate reports on the pace and patterns of land development and land protection in Massachusetts between 2012 and 2017.
These statistics describe changes in land use between 2012 and 2017. Estimates of acres of land converted from a natural state to a developed state can be found here, as well as the rate of development in comparison to other areas. Natural land consists of forest, wetland, and water; open land consists of agricultural areas, bare soil, beaches, barrens, or low vegetation; development includes low density residential and commercial/industrial/high density residential development. Percentage calculations are based on the state's total land area, excluding major waterbodies.
Rank in relation to other towns/cities is indicated.
There are 351 towns/cities in Massachusetts.

Statistic

Value

Rank in state

Total area of newly developed land from 2012 to 2017 (acres)
13
304
Total area of newly developed land from 2012 to 2017, standardized by town size (acres per square mile)
0.9
300
Total area of development (acres)
843
275
Total area of natural land (acres)
7,317
201
Total area of open land (acres)
895
194
Percent developed land
9 %
257
Percent natural land
77 %
95
Percent open land
9 %
130
Size of town in acres
8,992
264
Size of town in square miles
14.1
264
The level of protection for the area is summarized below. We also consider the proportion of important conservation resources that are protected in the area, including BioMap2 Core Habitat and Critical Natural Landscape, Green Infrastructure Network, and relatively climate change resilient land. Percentage calculations are based on the state's total land area, excluding major waterbodies.
Rank in relation to other towns/cities is indicated.
There are 351 towns/cities in Massachusetts.

Statistic

Value

Rank in state

Total area of permanently conserved land (acres)
2,667
185
Overall percent permanently conserved
30 %
106
Total area of newly conserved land from 2012 to 2019 (acres)
438
157
Total area of newly conserved BioMap2 Core Habitat (acres)
222
80
Total area of newly conserved BioMap2 CNL (acres)
405
61
Total area of newly conserved TNC resilient land (acres)
30
63
Total area of newly conserved GIN (acres)
438
157
Size of town in acres
8,992
264
Size of town in square miles
14.1
264
 

Fifth Edition

Released in June 2014, Losing Ground: Planning for Resilience reports on the pace and patterns of land development and land protection in Massachusetts between 2005 and 2013.
These statistics describe changes in land use between 2005 and 2013. Estimates of acres of land converted from a natural state to a developed state can be found here, as well as the rate of development in comparison to other areas. Natural land consists of forest, wetland, and water; open land consists of agricultural areas, bare soil, beaches, barrens, or low vegetation; development includes low density residential and commercial/industrial/high density residential development. Percentage calculations are based on the state's total land area, excluding major waterbodies.
Rank in relation to other towns/cities is indicated.
There are 351 towns/cities in Massachusetts.

Statistic

Value

Rank in state

Total area of new development (acres)
10
302
Total area of newly developed land from 2005 to 2013, standardized by town size (acres per square mile)
0.7
281
Natural land converted to development (acres)
6
292
Open land converted to development (acres)
4
277
The level of protection for the area is summarized below. We also consider the proportion of important conservation resources that are protected in the area, including BioMap2 Core Habitat and Critical Natural Landscape, and relatively climate change resilient land. Percentage calculations are based on the state's total land area, excluding major waterbodies.
Rank in relation to other towns/cities is indicated.
There are 351 towns/cities in Massachusetts.

Statistic

Value

Rank in state

Area protected 2005 - 2013 (acres)
226
143
Percent BioMap2 Core Habitat protected
35 %
212
Percent BioMap2 Critical Natural Landscape protected
32 %
218
Percent TNC resilient land protected
33 %
171
 

Fourth Edition

Released in May 2009, Losing Ground: Beyond the Footprint reports on the patterns of development and their impact on the Nature of Massachusetts, 1999 - 2005.
These statistics describe changes in land use between 1999 and 2005. Estimates of acres of land converted from a natural state to a developed state can be found here, as well as the rate of development in comparison to other areas. Natural land consists of forest, wetland, and water; development includes low density residential and commercial/industrial/high density residential development.
Rank in relation to other towns/cities is indicated.
There are 351 towns/cities in Massachusetts.

Statistic

Value

Rank in state

Natural land (acres) converted to development (1999-2005)
30
316
Total area of newly developed land from 1999 to 2005, standardized by town size (acres per square mile)
8.7
82
Acres protected for this area is shown below.
Rank in relation to other towns/cities is indicated.
There are 351 towns/cities in Massachusetts.

Statistic

Value

Rank in state

Acres protected (1999-2005)
3
252