Coalition: EPA’s $30 Million in Great Lakes Restoration Grants will Produce Results for People across Region

For Immediate Release:
August 8, 2011

Jordan Lubetkin, 734-887-7109,

ANN ARBOR, MICH. (Aug. 8, 2011) – The U.S. EPA today announced the first of its 2011 Great Lakes Restoration Initiative awards, providing 11 grants to Ohio organizations totaling more than $4.5 million. The EPA announced it will be awarding 70 awards for nearly $30 million over the next few weeks.

Responding to the announcement, Jeff Skelding, director of the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition, said:

“Today’s announcement is good news for people, communities and businesses. Efforts to restore the Great Lakes are already producing results. These grants will allow that effective work to continue. But there is still more work to be done.

“We look forward to working with Congress in the fall to finalize a 2012 budget that robustly funds Great Lakes programs to help local communities protect drinking water, safeguard public health, create jobs and uphold their way of life.

“If we cut funding now, it will only cost more later because projects will only get harder and more expensive the longer we wait.”

The U.S. Congress funded the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative at $300 million in the 2011 budget—$40 million through the EPA as part of a competitive grants program with the remainder going to restoration projects guided by other agencies like the National Parks Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and U.S. Department of Agriculture; toxic clean-up efforts under the EPA’s Great Lakes Legacy Act; and effective operation of the program.

Earlier in the year, the EPA received more than $120 million in applications for an announced $40 million in restoration grants—a level of demand that outpaced supply by more than 3-to-1.

The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative supports projects to restore habitat, clean up toxic sediments, reduce polluted run-off and prevent and control in invasive species. The federal initiative supports restoration activities in the eight states of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

The Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition consists of more than 120 environmental, conservation, outdoor recreation organizations, zoos, aquariums and museums representing millions of people, whose common goal is to restore and protect the Great Lakes.

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