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Ohio EPA Awards Environmental Education Grants Totaling $10,000 To Two Delaware County Organizations
Delaware residents will be able to learn about how their drinking water is processed and how to plan their gardens to benefit pollinators thanks to two projects, each of which received a $5,000 Ohio EPA environmental education grant.
City of Delaware
The city of Delaware will teach students of all ages about the changing states of water at its Water Treatment Plant Educational Center. The center will illustrate water conservation, water and wastewater treatment, the lack of treatment of storm water, and regional water supplies and history. An exhibit about the hydrological cycle is aligned with seventh grade science standards to illustrate the changing states of water moving through the lithosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere.
This center will also be used with Ohio Wesleyan University's environmental studies program.
Preservation Parks of Delaware
Preservation Parks of Delaware will offer Planting for Pollinators and educate visitors about how to enhance insect biodiversity and provide habitat to native pollinator species such as honeybees, solitary bees, butterflies, moths and hummingbirds.
These species are facing declines in Ohio and globally, and are responsible for pollinating more than 75 percent of flowering plants. A nearly half-acre demonstration garden and interpretive signs at Deer Haven Preserve will educate visitors about benefits of planting native species, limiting chemical use, and providing food (pollen, nectar), water (water feature, sunning puddle) and shelter for overwintering and reproduction of native insects, birds and other wildlife species.
In addition to signs, education staff will conduct programs throughout the year related to pollinators and utilizing the garden. These educators also host a number of school field trips at Deer Haven Preserve each year and will incorporate the garden and pollinator topics into field trip sessions that meet Ohio's academic content standards in science, social studies, language arts, fine arts and math. An accompanying media campaign will include the creation of short videos on YouTube, Facebook and the park district website to promote the project and highlight what residents can do in their own yards.
The Ohio Environmental Education Fund provides funding each year for environmental education projects targeting kindergarten through university students, the general public and the regulated community. In this grant cycle, six projects throughout the state were funded for a total of $26,777.
The next grant application deadline is July 15, 2015, with an electronic letter of intent to apply due by July 8. For additional information, contact the Ohio Environmental Education Fund on the web or at (614) 644-2873.
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1972 to consolidate efforts to protect and improve air quality, water quality and waste management in Ohio. Since then, air pollutants dropped by as much as 90 percent; large rivers meeting standards improved from 21 percent to 89 percent; and hundreds of polluting, open dumps were replaced with engineered landfills and an increased emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.