Feb 24, 2005

Nominations Sought for Targeted Watershed Grants

On February 18, EPA announced a call for nominations of Targeted Watersheds grants. Formerly called the Watershed Initiative program, the Targeted Watersheds Grant Program is an integral part of the agency’s watershed approach to clean water by providing assistance to state and local community groups to protect inland and coastal watersheds.

This year Congress has provided a total of $18 million for grants to support community-based approaches and activities to protect and restore local water resources – $10 million of which will go to support projects across the country and $8 million will be directed to projects within the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

This is the third year for the grants, which will be used to help support innovative market-based approaches to watershed projects, such as water quality trading. This most recent announcement for proposals relates to the nationwide proposals only.

In the first two years, the agency selected 34 watershed organizations to receive grants averaging $700,000. The selected organizations were those with workplans that were most ready-to-go and were likely to achieve environmental results in a relatively short time period.

For 2005, EPA is continuing its focus on approaches aimed to provide quick, measurable environmental results; partnerships, innovation and program integration.

Governors and tribal leaders are invited to submit nominations for projects that would promote and advance the successes of existing watershed work. Nominations are due on or before May 19.

Final selections of watershed grantees will be announced this summer. The Federal Register Notice with the Call for Nominations, and other information about the Targeted Watersheds Grant Program is available at http://www.epa.gov/owow/watershed/initiative/.