Saturday, January 22, 2011

WREN Accepting Watershed, Source Water Education Grant Applications

Looking to make a difference in your community? Want to “go greener” in your town for 2011 with solutions that will help keep Pennsylvania water resources clean and healthy?
The Water Resources Education Network has funding available up to $5,000 to help launch community projects that build awareness and educate Pennsylvania citizens and local officials about their role as environmental stewards, encourage behavior change, and improve public policies that will protect PA water resources.
WREN gives priority to projects that incorporate social marketing concepts and encourage individual or public policy actions that will protect and improve local water resources.
Since 1992, LWVPA-CEF has provided over $1.8 million in funding to over 277 community partnerships working to safeguard Pennsylvania water resources.
See the terrific projects we've already funded to get some creative ideas. Use these ideas to develop your own project - no need to re-invent the wheel!
For the 2011 round, WREN offers two separate funding tracks:

-- A Watershed Protection Education Project track that builds awareness, educates Pennsylvania local officials about their role as environmental stewards and offers specific actions that citizens can take at home, at work, and within the community to protect, improve, or remediate the watershed from the impacts of polluted runoff, also known as nonpoint source pollution. To encourage connection to local land use decisions, a municipality is required to be an active partner in the project.
Nonpoint source pollution includes: drainage or runoff from resource extraction, abandoned coal mines, oil or gas wells; inadequate erosion control practices during construction and urban runoff; improper agricultural practices (erosion and sedimentation, nutrient management, pesticide application); improper timber harvesting practices; failing on-lot septic systems or other abandoned waste disposal sites; or altered hydrology (changing the way water flows through an area) due to impervious surface area, stormwater, and floodplain management, riparian buffers, wetlands, natural stream channels. Grant award: up to $5,000 per project.

-- The WREN Source Water Protection Education Grant Program seeks to develop a network of Source Water Environmental Education Teams (SWEETs) to help Pennsylvania communities and public water suppliers conduct grass roots public education and to implement prevention actions at the local level that will reduce risks to public water sources.
The goal of the WREN Source Water Protection (SWP) Education Grant Program is to encourage local partnerships to conduct community education and help residents and businesses implement practical, step by step solutions to reduce risk of contamination and to protect the rivers, steams, lakes, and aquifers Pennsylvanians rely on for their public drinking water.
Local source water protection programs helps provide an extra margin of safety to water coming out of the tap, and offer the best line of defense to protect public health, ensure high quality drinking water for future generations, and keep treatment costs down.

Grants of up to $5,000 per project for local source water protection projects that concentrate on a specific community public water supply protection area. One regional project will be awarded up to $8,000 that will focus aquifer wide (groundwater systems) and/or watershed protection efforts (surface water), which includes multiple public water systems, and addresses cross-jurisdictional issues.
Applications are due by March 25. Grantees to be announced by mid May 2011, with project activities to be completed July 1, 2011 - June 30, 2012.
Guidance and application forms are available online. Get all the details, and download the Grant Guidance and Application at the WREN website. Questions? Call Julie Kollar, WREN Program Director at 267-468-0555 or send email to:

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