- Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
Media Contact for State and Federal Environmental Officials seek Applications for Restoration and Land Acquisition Projects in Housatonic River Watershed
Edmund Coletta, MassDEP – Director of Public Affairs
BOSTON — State and federal environmental officials today announced the availability of $1.45 million in the fourth and final round of funding from the General Electric/Housatonic River Natural Resource Damage (NRD) Assessment and Restoration case. Applications for restoration and land acquisition projects to conserve habitat within the Housatonic River watershed are now being accepted by the Massachusetts SubCouncil of the Housatonic River Natural Resource Trustees (MA SubCouncil).
Multiple grants may be awarded by the MA SubCouncil, which is comprised of the Executive Office of Energy and Environment Affairs (EEA), represented by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP), as Lead Administrative Trustee for the Massachusetts, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).
Details regarding project eligibility and instructions for submitting a grant application are provided in the Grant Announcement and Application package, which is available online at the MassDEP NRD Program website. Applicants having difficulty obtaining required materials electronically may contact Thomas M. Potter at 617-292-5628 or by e-mail at Thomas.Potter@state.ma.us. Hard copies of application materials are available for viewing at the Lenox Library and other public libraries in the Housatonic River watershed in Massachusetts.
Questions regarding the Grant Announcement and Application must be submitted on or before Friday, September 7, 2018. Completed applications must be received no later than 4:30 p.m. on Monday, October 1, 2018, at:
Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
Bureau of Waste Site Cleanup
One Winter Street, 6th Floor
Boston, MA 02108
Attn: Thomas M. Potter
In Round 1, the SubCouncil awarded $4 million for restoration projects ranging from invasive species control and restoring river flow to implementing an environmental literacy program. In Round 2, the SubCouncil awarded $1.3 million to five projects addressing habitat continuity restoration, wildlife resources protection, riparian buffer and floodplain forest restoration, invasive species control, and educational programming. In Round 3, the SubCouncil awarded $2.2 million to six projects focusing on land acquisition.
The settlement, originally filed as a consent decree in 2000, provided more than $15 million to compensate Massachusetts and Connecticut for nature resource damages caused by the release of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) from GE’s Pittsfield plant. PCB pollution affected aquatic wildlife and habitats, as well as waterfowl and predators that consume contaminated organisms. Massachusetts was awarded $7.75 million of the settlement total.
Further information about the Housatonic River Watershed Restoration Program in Massachusetts and this final round of funding is available online, and hard copies are available at the Lenox Library and other public libraries in the Housatonic River watershed. Additional information can be obtained by contacting Robin MacEwan of Stantec Consulting Inc., at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 413-584-4776.