US streams and wetlands to be restored with community-led efforts
About 40 community-led conservation projects throughout the US have been awarded $395,000 to restore US streams and wetlands.
The Five Star Restoration Grant Program will provide grants of between $5,000 and $13,500 to community-based partnerships that involve local government and tribal agencies, conservation organisations, youth corps, local businesses and schools to support wetland and streamside restoration projects.
“Five Star Restoration” projects must involve at least five different partners, such as environmental, educational, youth, business and philanthropic organizations, other community groups, elected officials, and government agencies.
The grants were made by The National Association of Counties, the National Association of Service and Conservation Corps, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and the Wildlife Habitat Council.
The projects were selected from a competitive pool of over 300 applications received from 47 states and tribes.
Consideration for funding is based upon ecological benefits, education and training opportunities for students and at-risk youth groups and other social and economic benefits to the community. The program emphasizes collaborative strategies built around improving the health of watersheds and the quality of the communities they sustain.
The program is funded by the Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds of the EPA’s Office of Water, and the National Marine Fisheries Service Community-based Restoration Program for select grants in coastal communities. Participating communities have committed additional funding, materials, land, technical assistance, and labour worth over $1.8 million.
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