Pa. DEP Awards Grants to Restore, Protect Pennsylvania's Coastal Zones

Agency Now Accepting Applications for 2013 Grants

HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 23, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Department of Environmental Protection has awarded more than $900,000 in annual coastal zone management grants to organizations dedicated to protecting and preserving Pennsylvania's coastal zones along Lake Erie and the Delaware Estuary. The agency is now accepting applications for 2013.

Coastal zone management grants support programs that measure the impact of various pollution sources; improve public access; preserve habitats; and educate the public about the benefits of the state's coastal zones.

"The coastal waters of the Delaware Estuary and Lake Erie are two of Pennsylvania's many ecological assets," DEP Secretary Mike Krancer said. "We are committed to protecting these assets, and the grants will enhance our ongoing efforts to maintain our coastal waters."

The annual grants, largely funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), were awarded to 26 non-profit and government organizations in counties that border Pennsylvania's coastal zones or have a direct impact on water quality in those areas. NOAA is a federal agency under the Department of Commerce with programs in each state that work to inform residents of the changing impacts of weather and water resources. In Pennsylvania, those programs include the National Ocean Service and National Weather Service.

Coastal zones and adjacent shore land face increasing pressure from development, erosion, biodiversity losses and pollution. Pennsylvania's two coastal areas are a 112-mile stretch along the Delaware Estuary and 76 miles along Lake Erie.

The Delaware Estuary coastal zone is in Bucks, Delaware and Philadelphia counties and contains islands, marshes and the shore lands of tributaries that are affected by ocean tides. The Delaware Estuary is considered one of the largest freshwater ports in the world.

The Lake Erie coastal zone is in Erie County and includes several major tributaries' shorelines. The zone extends 3.6 miles inland on the eastern side and about 800 feet on the western side of the City of Erie, all to the middle of the lake, which is the Canadian boundary.

Non-profit organizations, schools and universities, local government organizations, authorities and state agencies are encouraged to apply for the 2013 grants until Oct. 15, 2012.

For more information and to apply for the 2013 grants, visit www.dep.state.pa.us, keyword: Coastal Zone.

Media contact: Amanda Witman, 717-787-1323

Editor's note: A complete list of the $913,800 awarded in coastal zone management grants follows:

Berks County
Berks County Conservation District - $20,000 to implement and track the Coastal Non-Point Pollution Program management measures.

Bucks County
Bucks County Conservation District - $20,000 to implement and track the Coastal Non-Point Pollution Program management measures.

Bucks County Commissioners - $45,000 to design a concept for the Mill (Otter) Queen Anne Creek Trail, a multi-use recreational trail that will connect four Bucks County parks, Bristol Borough and Bristol Falls.

Bucks County Commissioners - $20,000 to develop a Sediment Reduction Plan for the Neshaminy Creek watershed, which covers parts of Bucks and Montgomery counties.

Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission - $40,000 to restore historically inspired fences to protect historic planting and propagation beds and to protect visitors and guide them through the replica of William Penn's 17th-century estate along the Delaware River.

Bensalem Township - $40,000 to develop construction documents for the Bensalem Greenway / Delaware River Trail, a 3.5-mile multi-use trail that will connect residents and visitors to several waterfront destinations.

Chester County
Chester County Conservation District - $20,000 to implement and track the Coastal Non-Point Pollution program management measures.

Delaware County
Delaware County Conservation District - $20,000 to implement and track the Coastal Non-Point Pollution Program management measures.

Delaware County Planning Department - $8,000 for an interactive environmental education program as part of the annual Delaware County Riverfront Resource Environmental Event.

Erie County
Erie County Conservation District - $20,000 to implement and track the Coastal Non-Point Pollution Program management measures.

Erie County Conservation District - $8,000 for a county-wide stream study for students, the results of which will be published in flyers and distributed to local municipalities and the public.

Erie County Department of Planning - $67,000 for coordination and technical assistance with Lake Erie Coastal Zone projects.

Erie County Department of Planning - $9,000 to assist Lake Erie coastal communities in administering the Bluff Recession and Setback Act of 1980. Nine municipalities have been designated as having bluff recession hazard areas and are required to administer bluff setback ordinances.

Northwest Tri-County Intermediate Unit #5 - $13,000 to operate the Regional Summer School of Excellence program, "Investigating and Researching Environmental Health Problems."  

Environment Erie - $25,000 for Earth Partnership: Renewing Our Great Lake, an educational program for students and teachers focusing on stormwater management.

City of Erie - $25,000 to complete Phase 1 of a comprehensive plan for the City of Erie.

Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission - $19,000 to acquire 1.7 acres of vacant land along Twelvemile Creek next to a public park owned by Harborcreek Township.

Erie-Western PA Port Authority - $50,000 for the replacement of floating docks, a courtesy dock and a floating gas dock at Lampe Marina.

Erie Times-News in Education Inc. - $38,760 for a recurring Newspaper in Education weekly page focusing on coastal zone environmental issues.

Montgomery County
Montgomery County Conservation District - $20,000 to implement and track the Coastal Non-Point Pollution Program management measures.

Philadelphia County
Philadelphia Water Department - $20,000 to implement and track the Coastal Non-Point Pollution Program management measures.

Schuylkill River Development Corp. - $50,000 to design a trail segment to extend the Schuylkill River Trail along Schuylkill Banks from Grays Ferry Ave. to Bartram's Garden on the West side of the Schuylkill River.

Delaware River Waterfront Corporation - $45,000 to implement Phase 2 of the Washington Ave. Green at Pier 53 project. This project will create a "pier park" that will have educational programming, inter-tidal wetlands in the riparian area around the pier and signs featuring diagrams and other helpful visuals.

Clean Air Council - $45,000 for the preliminary design and engineering of Cobbs Creek Connector Trail, which includes the CSX and Amtrak railroad crossing and the cycletrack gateway to the John Heinz Wildlife Refuge.

Philadelphia Wooden Boat Factory - $39,040 to hire students as Community Row River guides, who will create a narrative of the river and share it with the public.

Partnership for the Delaware Estuary Inc. - $28,000 to conduct Pennsylvania Coast Day 2013 events, which educate the public about coastal recreation, historic sites and public access.

Schuylkill County
Schuylkill County Conservation District - $20,000 to implement and track the Coastal Non-Point Pollution Program management measures.

Multiple counties
Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission - $50,000 to implement the Coastal Zone Management Program in the Delaware Estuary Coastal Zone that includes Delaware, Philadelphia and Bucks counties.

Penn State Sea Grant - $89,000 to develop an aquatic invasive rapid response monitoring and surveillance system; build Marine Spatial Planning; and explore the Lake Erie coastal zone boundary and potential interests in expansion.

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection



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http://www.depweb.state.pa.us

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