Watershed News: February 2011
Watershed News is a publication of EPA's Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds. It is designed to provide timely information to groups working at the watershed level.
In this month's newsletter1) The Green Prize in Public Education
2) 2011 NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowships in Marine Resource Economics
3) EPA Seeks Applications for Environmental Community Grants
4) Climate Ready Estuaries (CRE) Releases the 2010 CRE Progress Report
5) Administrator Jackson, SBA Administrator Mills Announce Launch of Water Technology Innovation Cluster / Smart environmental protection creates jobs
6) Mississippi River/ Gulf of Mexico Watershed Nutrient Task Force Releases FY 2011 Operating Plan
7) EPA Region 7 and 8 Host Meeting with State Agriculture Directors in Denver
8) Water Science Glossary of Terms
9) Mitigating Climate Change with Water and Energy Efficiency
10) Louisiana Environmental Leadership Pollution Prevention Program (LAELP)
11) National Green Infrastructure Conference 2011
12) International Conference on Stormwater and Urban Water Systems Modeling
13) Delaware River Basin Forum
14) Wetlands, Water Resources, and People: Society of Wetland Scientists' Mid-Atlantic and South Atlantic Chapters Annual Meeting
The National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF), with major support from the NEA Foundation and in partnership with EarthEcho International, will recognize and celebrate an outstanding K-12 public school that has successfully taken on the challenge of becoming a green school through the Green Prize in Public Education . NEEF will award $10,000 to a K-12 public school that has most successfully implemented an innovative, sustainable and replicable school-wide greening effort that has involved and benefitted its students. Two merit awards of $5,000 each will also be given to schools that demonstrate this kind of success. Applications are being accepted through February 15, 2011.
The Graduate Fellowship Program generally awards two new PhD fellowships each year to students who are interested in careers related to the development and implementation of quantitative methods for assessing the economics of the conservation and management of living marine resources. Fellows will work on thesis problems of public interest and relevance to NMFS under the guidance of NMFS mentors at participating NMFS Science Centers or Laboratories. The NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowships in Marine Resource Economics meets NOAA's Mission goal of Protect, Restore and Manage the Use of Coastal and Ocean Resources Through Ecosystem-Based Management. The closing date for applications is February 18, 2011.
EPA is making approximately $2 million available in 2011 to reduce pollution at the local level through the Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) program. CARE is a community-based program that works with county and local governments, tribes, non-profit organizations and universities to help the public understand and reduce toxic risks from numerous sources. Since 2005, CARE has reached 78 communities in several states and territories. A recent evaluation by the National Association of Public Administration (NAPA) recognized the CARE program as a solid tested framework for engaging communities and other stakeholders.
EPA will award CARE cooperative agreements in two levels. Level I awards range from $75,000 to $100,000 each and will help establish community-based partnerships to develop local environmental priorities. Level II awards range from $150,000 to $300,000 each and will support communities that have established broad-based partnerships, have identified the priority toxic risks in the community, and are prepared to measure results, implement risk-reduction activities and become self-sustaining.
Please note that due to appropriation law concerns, until Congress provides separate authorization, EPA can only award CARE Level II cooperative agreements to applicants that have already received CARE Level I cooperative agreements. Applications for the CARE assistance agreements are due by March 22, 2011, 4 p.m. EST. EPA will conduct three Webcasts to answer questions from prospective applicants about the application process on February 8 and 23, and March 2 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
CRE is a partnership between EPA and the National Estuary Programs (NEPs) to build capacity among coastal managers to improve the resilience of coastal areas to the impacts of climate change. The Progress Report focuses on the accomplishments of existing CRE partners. Accomplishments in 2010 include partnering with four new NEPs; distributing start-up grants to the Partners, which have been matched 1:1; providing direct technical assistance to Partners; and developing climate change indicators for two NEPs, among other accomplishments.
Administrator Jackson, SBA Administrator Mills Announce Launch of Water Technology Innovation Cluster / Smart environmental protection creates jobs
EPA Administrator, Lisa P. Jackson, and U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Karen Mills traveled to Cincinnati, Ohio to announce a new collaborative effort called the Water Technology Innovation Cluster (WTIC). The WTIC will develop and commercialize innovative technologies to solve environmental and public health challenges, encourage sustainable economic development, and create jobs. As a starting point, WTIC will focus on technologies in the states of Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana that will help protect the health of millions of Americans by developing state of the art safeguards for clean water.
This region is home to many small firms ready to seize the opportunities presented by the WTIC. Small businesses are the engine of growth for the economy and they develop the cutting-edge products and services we need to stay competitive on a global scale. By bringing them together with public utilities, research partners, and others, their ideas will have greater opportunities to move from the drawing board to the marketplace.
Mississippi River/ Gulf of Mexico Watershed Nutrient Task Force Releases FY 2011 Operating Plan (PDF) (138 pp, 2.6MB, About PDF)
This is a compilation of 2011 actions to implement the Gulf Hypoxia Action Plan 2008 .The Annual Operating Plans are a compilation of actions that state and federal members of the Task Force have planned to undertake during the listed years to implement the Action Plan. Each item in the Operating Plans specifically implements one of the eleven action items set forth in the Action Plan. The Operating Plan includes, if known, funding levels and specific milestones for the current fiscal year. The items listed in the Operating Plans highlight the cumulative efforts of the individual Task Force agencies in implementing the Action Plan.
EPA officials hosted a meeting with the directors of state agriculture departments of Iowa, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming. The meeting, held at EPA’s Region 8 building in Denver, Colo., provided a forum for dialogue on EPA programs and regulations as well as specific issues, interests and concerns of the agriculture sector.
"The agricultural community should be credited with taking significant steps to protect the environment while finding innovative ways to feed millions," said EPA Region 7 Administrator Karl Brooks. "Because of the broad impact that America’s farmers and ranchers have on everything from daily food prices to widespread environmental impacts to emerging renewable fuel technologies, it is important to have state agriculture directors as part of our decision making process."
Watershed Tool of the Month
The U.S. Geological Survey compiled a list of water-related terms that can help individuals understand water science. It is a resource for the USGS Water Science for Schools website. The list is compiled from a number of sources and should not be considered an "official" U.S. Geological Survey water glossary. Many of the terms are pulled from the "Water Words Dictionary: A Compilation of Technical Water, Water Quality, Environmental, and Water-Related Terms" from the Nevada Division of Water Resources Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
Mitigating Climate Change with Water and Energy Efficiency
Registration will open soon for this next Watershed Academy Webcast. For additional information, visit www.epa.gov/watershedwebcasts.
Watershed Spotlight: Local Leaders
Since the inception of the Mississippi River/Gulf of Mexico Watershed Nutrient Task Force, the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ) has worked with Mississippi River industries and municipalities through the Nutrient Reduction Workgroup of the Louisiana Environmental Leadership Pollution Prevention Program (LAELP) to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus discharges. Such nitrogen and phosphorus reductions will help to reduce the size of the hypoxic zone and are consistent with Action Item 1 in the Gulf Hypoxia Action Plan 2008, which calls for development of nutrient-reduction strategies by the states in the MARB. LAELP is a voluntary program that works to improve the quality of Louisiana’s environment through pollution prevention, community environmental outreach, and environmental management. By participating in the program, member industries and municipalities can submit qualified nitrogen and phosphorus reduction projects that meet the program goals, and, if chosen by the steering committee as an annual award winner, receive recognition at a ceremony co-hosted by the governor and LDEQ secretary.
Congratulations to NALCO Company of Garyville, a member of the LAELP Nutrient Reduction Workgroup, for receiving an Environmental Leadership Program Award in the Pollution Prevention category at the 2010 ELP Ceremony on March 24, 2010. Among NALCO’s achievements recognized by the award is the reduction of nitrate compound concentration in its plant effluent by 50 percent. The company also achieved an additional 25 percent reduction with the installation of an online meter. NALCO’s nitrate reductions help reduce nitrogen and phosphorus concentrations in the Mississippi River and hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. NALCO is the fifth river industry to receive a prestigious LAELP award for nutrient reduction to the Mississippi River.
Upcoming Conferences and Workshops
February 23-25, Shepherdstown, West Virginia. The Inaugural 2011 National Green Infrastructure Conference is a gathering of policy-makers, practitioners, and on-the-ground implementers of green infrastructure practices and design from around the country. This is the first official conference of the National Green Infrastructure Community of Practice. Hear nationally recognized speakers from across the country discuss key elements for success and vital lessons-learned in implementing green infrastructure strategies on-the-ground. Explore techniques for planning and design of green infrastructure networks at multiple scales. The Honorable Karl Dean, Mayor of Nashville, Tennessee, will discuss connecting community economic development to green infrastructure planning with the unveiling of the Nashville Open Space Plan. Plus, participate in the development of a national strategy for Green Infrastructure!
February 24-25, Toronto, Ontario. The annual International Conference on Stormwater and Urban Water Systems Modeling is a forum for professionals from across North America and overseas to exchange ideas and experience on current practices and emerging technologies. This forum is for engineers, scientists, modelers and administrators involved in water pollution control and water systems design and analysis. The conference is sponsored by the ASCE Urban Water Resources Research Council, the American Water Resources Association, the US EPA, the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Energy, the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering, and Conservation Ontario. The proceedings are published as hard-bound monographs - peer reviewed and closely edited for consistency and clarity with a comprehensive index. Detailed papers make them a valuable resource. The 2010 proceedings, Cognitive Modeling of Urban Water Systems - Monograph 19, will be distributed at the conference and is included in the registration fee.
March 10, 2011, Phildadelphia, PA, Delaware, New Jersey, and New York. The Delaware River Basin Forum is a basin-wide event on March 10, 2011 to identify and explore issues impacting water resource sustainability for the more than 15 million people who rely on surface and ground water from the basin. The Forum will take place simultaneously at eight locations in the Basin, and proceedings will be webcast live. The format of the event will reflect a theme of regional-local connectedness: a central session in Philadelphia where panelists set the stage by framing current and forecasted influences on water resources basin-wide, while interacting with satellite forums in locations in Delaware, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania where stakeholders convene to deliberate local issues and needs.
Wetlands, Water Resources, and People: Society of Wetland Scientists' Mid-Atlantic and South Atlantic Chapters Annual Meeting
March 7-8, 2011, Reston, VA. The Society of Wetland Scientists South Atlantic and Mid Atlantic Joint Chapter Meeting Wetlands, Water Resources, and People will be held March 7 and 8, 2011 at the USGS Headquarters in Reston, Virginia. The two-day program will include contributed oral sessions and a poster session; over 70 abstracts were submitted for this meeting. The conference theme is Wetlands, Water Resources, and People and will include and integrate people from diverse specialties in wetlands and aquatic resources. The meeting includes a Monday early evening mixer and poster session. Registration deadline is February 25th.