MEDIA CONTACT: Heather Lauer

Ohio EPA Awards Grant to Improve Water Quality in Glady Run

Ohio EPA has awarded the Greene County Park District $226,962 to restore and stabilize approximately 3,525 linear feet of stream channel and adjacent riparian zone (30.09 acres) along Glady Run. This is one of 12 grants Ohio EPA awarded statewide totaling $2.7 million to help restore waterways impacted by nonpoint source pollution.

The Glady Run project will stabilize and restore stream banks, which are rapidly eroding, especially along an abandoned railroad grade which has been converted to the Little Miami Scenic Trail. The project will include using a rock to stabilize the bank; replanting native vegetation along the stream; installing erosion controls materials; and installing live shrub cuttings. In addition to restoration and stabilization activities, the project proposes to protect an additional 39.3 acres of high-quality stream, riparian and wetland acres with conservation easements.

This project is consistent with a watershed action plan adopted following a 2002 Little Miami Watershed study. Grant-covered activities will take place during a three-year period. Greene County Park District will contribute a value of $64,336.

Nonpoint source pollution is the leading cause of water quality impairment in Ohio. It is caused by rain or snowmelt moving over and through the ground, picking up natural and human-made pollutants and depositing them in lakes, rivers, wetlands and other waterways. Other forms of nonpoint source pollution include modifications to natural stream flow, habitat alteration and nutrients. Polluted runoff can have harmful effects on drinking water supplies, recreation, fisheries and wildlife. In 1987, the federal Clean Water Act created a national grant program to control nonpoint source pollution.

Eligible applicants include counties, municipalities, townships, park districts, local watershed groups, nonprofit organizations, soil and water conservation districts, conservation organizations and others. Applicants may apply for one grant for each watershed, but may include several types of projects within a single application up to $350,000.

In 1987, Section 319 of the federal Clean Water Act created a national program to control nonpoint source pollution. Ohio EPA administers the program for U.S. EPA and distributes millions of federal dollars to projects proposed by local governments and community organizations such as watershed groups. To be eligible, grant recipients must contribute at least a 20 percent match consisting of cash or in-kind contributions or services. Grants of up to $350,000 are awarded for three-year periods. More information on Section 319 grants is available online.

Applications for the next round of grants, which are due on June 1, 2012, are available through Ohio EPA’s district offices, or by emailing or calling Russ Gibson at (614) 644-2020 or Martha Spurbeck at (614) 644-2869. More information on the grants and an electronic application is available online, along with examples of previously successful projects.