Local river stewards get federal grants | Local News


The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation announced 41 grants, including one along the entire Delaware River and one along the Beaverkill River, at a Zoom press conference on Monday.

The Delaware River Basin Commission received a grant of $ 499,126 according to the press release. The commission will spend an additional $ 1.1 million to conduct research on water management through the completion of three studies focusing on water quality, emerging contaminants and future water availability, according to the press release. The project will be used to plan efforts, including review of future water supply projects, wastewater assimilation capacity, assessment of flow rates, conservation releases, mitigation triggers. consumption use, freshwater flow requirements to cope with sea level rise and potential flow targets, the discharge mentioned.

Catskill Mountainkeeper has received a grant of $ 75,000 and will provide $ 75,442 in matching funds to protect habitat for Eastern Brook Trout in the Beaverkill Valley. The organization is fighting the hemlock woolly aphid, which in turn will protect and maintain trout habitat and recreational opportunities along the river.

U.S. Representative Antonio Delgado, D-Rhinebeck, who formed the Congressional Delaware River Watershed Caucus with U.S. Representative Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa., Praised the grants at the press conference. He said the river is an economic engine in his district and generates $ 400 million for the local economy each year. The river touches 23 congressional districts and generates $ 25 billion in economic activity and $ 21 billion in ecosystem goods and services, he said. The grants awarded will help small businesses, help protect the region from climate change and help children go fly fishing with their parents, he said.

Grants of $ 11.5 million and matching funds of $ 13.5 million will deliver on-the-ground benefits to farms, wetlands and urban areas, remove barrier dams for spawning fish and open 1 500 acres of public land in the Four State area. The Delaware River flows through Amanda Basso, said the Northeast Regional Director of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

The grants were awarded through two programs administered by the NFWF: the Delaware River Restoration Fund, funded by the William Penn Foundation; and the Delaware Watershed Conservation Fund, funded by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, according to the press release. The William Penn Foundation donated $ 2 million, the statement said.

The DWCF was established in 2018 and is funded by the US Fish and Wildlife Service to meet the goals of the Delaware River Basin Conservation Act, which was passed in 2016, according to the press release. The law guides and supports federal, state, regional and local partners to identify, prioritize and implement habitat restoration and conservation activities in the watershed.

Since 2016, the US Fish and Wildlife Service has partnered with 32 regional partners to create resilient habitats for fish and wildlife, revitalize the urban landscape and help the economy, said Wendi Weber, Atlantic Regional Director. Northern and Appalachian Mountains from the US Fish and Wildlife Service. The Delaware River watershed will be the model for the Chesapeake Landscape Defense Watershed Investment Act that was passed in October 2020, she said.

The Delaware River provides drinking water to 15 million people, including people living in New York City and Philadelphia, and is renowned for its wildlife and fishing.

This is the sixth year that the NFWF has provided funding for Delaware River watershed projects, the statement said. Previous grants in Delaware County provided funds to restore Sands Creek in Hancock; improved habitat for Wood Thrush and Cerulean Warbler in the northeastern part of the county; restored five streams at Hancock, Deposit and Colchester; restored Cadosia Creek and the East Branch Delaware River in East Branch; improved aquatic habitat in the towns of Deposit and Colchester; and removed and replaced two dilapidated culverts in the city of Delhi to aid trout. Previous grants totaled around $ 2.2 million according to figures shared by the NFWF.

Editor-in-chief Vicky Klukkert can be reached at [email protected] or 607-441-7221. Follow her @DS_VickyK on Twitter.


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