EPA Awarding $2.7 Million to Revitalize Urban Waters

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is awarding $2.7 million to 46 organizations in 32 states and Puerto Rico to help restore urban waters, support community revitalization and protect Americans’ health. Nancy Stoner made the announcement today in Atlanta and awarded a grant to the Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper organization. The group will use the funds to expand its Water Watch program to improve water quality and human health in local metro Atlanta neighborhoods.

EPA’s Urban Waters program funding supports communities’ efforts to access, improve and benefit from their urban waters and the surrounding land. Urban waters include canals, rivers, lakes, wetlands, aquifers, estuaries, bays and oceans in urbanized areas. The grants range from $30,000 to $60,000 for projects across the country, including in a number of underserved communities. Recipients will promote the restoration of urban waters through community engagement and outreach, water quality monitoring and studies, and environmental education and training. To view a list of the projects that will be funded, visit http://www.epa.gov/urbanwaters/funding

Many urban waterways have been polluted for years by sewage, runoff from city streets and contamination from abandoned industrial facilities. Healthy and accessible urban waters can help grow local businesses and enhance educational, economic, recreational, employment and social opportunities in nearby communities. By promoting public access to urban waterways, EPA will help communities become active participants in restoring urban waters while improving and protecting their neighborhoods.

EPA’s Urban Waters program supports the goals and principles of the Urban Waters Federal Partnership, a partnership of 12 federal agencies working to reconnect urban communities with their waterways by improving coordination among federal agencies and collaborating with community‐led revitalization efforts.

The Urban Waters Federal Partnership closely aligns with and advances the work of the White House’s place‐based efforts, including the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, to revitalize communities, create jobs and improve the quality of life in cities and towns across the nation. The Urban Waters Federal Partnership also advances the work of President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors Initiative.

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