The Environmental Stewardship and Watershed Protection Act authorizes DEP to allocate grants for acid mine drainage abatement, mine cleanup efforts, abandoned oil and gas well plugging and local watershed-based conservation projects. These projects can include: watershed assessments and development of watershed restoration or protection plans; implementation of watershed restoration or protection projects (stormwater management wetlands, riparian buffer fencing and planting, streambank restoration agricultural BMPs; construction of mine drainage remediation systems; and demonstration/education projects and outreach activities.
These grants are available to a variety of eligible applicants, including: counties, authorities and other municipalities; county conservation districts; watershed organizations; and other organizations involved in the restoration and protection of Pennsylvania's environment. These grants will support local projects to clean up non-point sources of pollution throughout Pennsylvania.
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Swatara Creek Floodplain Restoration phase 1 lowered and restored 10+ acres of floodplain, wetlands, and streambank area along the creek in Pine Grove Borough. Completed in September 2020, this project spared homes and businesses from flooding on Dec. 25, 2020, and again on Sept. 1, 2021. -- Wayne Lehman, Schuylkill Conservation District
Nutrient management plans are an essential step in designing and implementing agricultural best management practices to protect waterways from non-point-source pollution. Growing Greener funding is offsetting the cost of these plans for more than 30 farm operators in the northeast region. -- Colleen Campion, Wayne Conservation District
In keeping with our congregation's goal of having a positive impact on the community, our stormwater retention project enabled us to make a positive impact on the environment and provided an excellent opportunity for education on the importance of being good caretakers of the earth and good neighbors. -- Brian Rissinger, Executive Director, Reform Congregation Keneseth Israel
We converted 11,000 sq. ft. of parking lot to naturalized areas with five stormwater features. The features slow down and filter polluted stormwater from over three acres of impervious surface before it enters our creeks. Thirty community residents and students participated in the planting. We’re proud of the environmental and educational impacts of this collaboration. -- Julie Slavet, Executive Director, Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Watershed Partnership
I saw what my neighbor had done with the Turtle Creek partnership, and I wanted to get the stream back to what it was 45 years ago. You can see the improvements, you can see how fast the water’s moving and the sediment is no longer in the creek bed, with beautiful grass along the edge of the stream. The property has become more productive. Good management programs and stewardship of the land have brought this stream back to what I grew up with. -- Greg Brown, Turtle Creek landowner