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Water: Watersheds

Watershed News December 2003

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.


Watershed News Index


  1. No New Rule on Federal Regulatory Jurisdiction over Isolated Wetlands
  2. New Online Business Resource on Climate Management
  3. Beach Currents Makes News

Upcoming Conferences and Meetings

  1. Restore America's Estuaries' Second National Conference on Coastal and Estuarine Habitat Restoration
  2. 2004 Community Involvement Conference and Training
  3. Best Education Practices for Water Outreach Professionals Symposium, June 3-4, 2004, Call for Papers Deadline: January 30, 2004
  4. Wild Trout Symposium

Awards and Funding Opportunities

  1. Five Star Restoration Grants
  2. SeaWorld, Busch Gardens and Fujifilm Team Up to Reward Groups
  3. State Monitoring, Assessment, and Reporting Program Grants and Cooperative Agreements - Request for Proposals
  4. Chesapeake Bay Small Watershed Grants Program Solicits Applications


1) No New Rule on Federal Regulatory Jurisdiction over Isolated Wetlands

Yesterday, December 17, EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers announced that they would not issue a new rule on federal regulatory jurisdiction over isolated wetlands.

Birds in flight over water "Across the Federal Government, the Bush Administration has reaffirmed and bolstered protections for wetlands, which are vital for water quality, the health of our streams and wildlife habitat," said EPA Administrator Mike Leavitt. Assistant Secretary of the Army John Paul Woodley Jr. added, "We will continue our efforts to ensure that the Corps' regulatory program is as effective, efficient and responsive as it can be."

The Supreme Court's 2001 decision in the case of Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (commonly referred to as to "SWANCC") overturned the Corps' assertion of federal jurisdiction over certain isolated wetlands based on the presence of migratory birds. EPA and the Corps responded by issuing revised guidance to their field offices. At the same time, the Agencies reaffirmed federal jurisdiction over the majority of wetlands not impacted by the decision.

After soliciting public comment to determine if further regulatory clarification was needed, the EPA and the Corps have decided to preserve the federal government's authority to protect our wetlands. The agencies will continue to monitor implementation of this important program to ensure its effectiveness. Click here for the Press Release.

2) GreenBiz and BSR Launch New Online Business Resource on Climate Management

Climate Biz News front page Business for Social Responsibility and Green Business Network have launched ClimateBiz.com Exit EPA Disclaimer , a new web site designed to help companies understand the underlying issues behind climate change, assess their climate footprint, and devise and implement a plan to reduce their climate impacts throughout their operations. The site is organized into eight topics, reflecting the process most companies go through in addressing climate-from making the business case to measuring, reducing, and offsetting climate impacts, to receiving recognition. Each topic contains backgrounders, listings of helpful organizations and government programs, tools and resources, leadership practices, and related news stories. The site will be updated regularly, with news and new resources added on a weekly basis. Users can also keep up to date through a free electronic newsletter, ClimateBiz News. For the full story, go to: http://www.greenbiz.com/ Exit EPA Disclaimer

3) Beach Currents Makes News

Beach Currents front pageEPA recently released the first issue of Beach Currents, a periodic newsletter promoting communication among state, tribal, and local public health officials about their efforts to protect our beaches. The first edition features the experiences of Maine, Rhode Island, and Wisconsin in developing their beach monitoring programs. Beach Currents is available online at http://www.epa.gov/waterscience/beaches/currents/. The second issue will go out in March 2004. EPA encourages beach management professionals to submit articles sharing their successes and challenges. For more information, contact Beth LeaMond at Leamond.beth@epa.gov, phone: 202-566-0444.

Upcoming Conferences and Meetings

Restore America's Estuaries poster 4) Restore America's Estuaries' Second National Conference on Coastal and Estuarine Habitat Restoration

Restore America's Estuaries is once again gathering the restoration community to advance the success of coastal and estuarine habitat restoration. The conference will address habitat restoration in coastal and estuarine areas of the United States, including the Great Lakes region, as well as international waters. It will also feature a focus on restoration challenges and opportunities in the Pacific Northwest, with an emphasis on transferable lessons learned. The conference will be held at the Washington State Convention & Trade Center and the Grand Hyatt in Seattle, Washington on September 12-15, 2004. Additional information about the conference can be found at: http://www.estuaries.org/objects/2004RAECFP.pdf [BROKEN](PDF, 39KB) Exit EPA Disclaimer

5) 2004 EPA Community Involvement Conference and Training

In its 7th year, the Community Involvement Conference has proven to be an excellent opportunity to share lessons learned and to establish and monitor EPA's standards for community involvement. It's a great event for representatives of federal agencies, states, local governments, NGOs and private practitioners of citizen engagement to showcase their successes, compare notes about best practices, and network, network, network. The conference covers the entire scope of public participation, community involvement, partnership building, and outreach and education related to all aspects of environmental protection. The conference will be held in Denver, Colorado, June 15-18, 2004. The Call for Presenters is now available. All proposals are due by December 19, 2003. To learn more, visit http://www.epancic.org/2004 Exit EPA Disclaimer.

6) Best Education Practices for Water Outreach Professionals Symposium, June 3-4, 2004, Call for Papers Deadline: January 30, 2004

The University of Wisconsin - Environmental Resources Center invites educators and researchers from all regions of the United States to submit proposals for papers and posters to be presented at a June 2004 Symposium on Best Education Practices (BEPs) for water outreach and education. The proposal deadline is January 30, 2004. Submission details are available on-line at http://www.uwex.edu/erc/waterbeps Exit EPA Disclaimer.

If you are a water outreach educator, natural resource professional, or researcher, please help build the national water quality BEP resource by sharing your knowledge. Conference organizers are looking for papers and posters that relate to one of the following content areas:

  • Papers that review and summarize multiple studies of audience-specific Best Education practices.

  • Papers or posters that report on research about audience-specific Best Education Practices.

  • Posters that describe a case study where Best Education Practices have been applied.

Best education practices (BEPs) refer to a program or practice that has been clearly defined, refined through repeated delivery, and supported by a substantial body of research. See target audience and Best Education Practice details at http://www.uwex.edu/erc/waterbeps Exit EPA Disclaimer.

7) Wild Trout Symposium

The 8th International Wild Trout Symposium will be held September 20-22, 2004 in Yellowstone featuring sessions on "Watershed-scale Approaches to Enhancing Trout Habitat and Reducing Non-point Source Pollution," "Communicating Fishery Science to the Public," and other themes desribed in the Call for Papers. Details are available on-line (www.wildtrout8.com)[BROKEN] Exit EPA Disclaimer. The organizers are seeking to attract a broad and diverse audience, speakers, and poster presentations to cooperatively promote the conservation of wild trout resources in a community-based watershed context. Deadline for abstracts is February 1.

Awards and Funding Opportunities

8) Five-Star Restoration Challenge Grants

egret in marsh grass The National Association of Counties, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and the Wildlife Habitat Council, in cooperation with the EPA, the Community-Based Restoration Program within NOAA Fisheries, and other sponsors (e.g., Office of Surface Mining), are soliciting applications for the Five-Star Restoration Challenge Grant Program. The Five-Star Program provides modest financial assistance on a competitive basis to support community-based wetland, riparian and coastal habitat restoration projects that build diverse partnerships and foster local natural resource stewardship through education, outreach and training activities. In 2003, 56 projects received grants of, on average, $10,000. Approximately 240 applications were received.

Projects must involve diverse partnerships of at least five organizations that contribute funding, land, technical assistance, workforce support, and/or other in-kind services. Preference is also given to projects that meet certain guidelines - for example, projects that are part of a larger watershed or community stewardship effort.

Applications must be postmarked by March 1, 2004. For more information, including project guidelines, please visit EPA's website, at www.epa.gov/owow/wetlands/restore/5star

kids sitting on dock 9) SeaWorld, Busch Gardens and Fujifilm Team Up to Reward Groups Protecting the Environment

Students, teachers, and community groups working for wildlife in their local communities are invited to apply for support through the 2004 SeaWorld/Busch Gardens/Fujifilm Environmental Excellence Awards program. The program will accept project submissions from across the United States. Eight organizations will be awarded $10,000 to further their conservation efforts. In addition to receiving funding to support their projects, winning groups also will receive an all-expense-paid trip for three group members and one adult leader to attend the annual awards event at SeaWorld San Diego in April. From the eight projects selected, one "Outstanding Environmental Educator/Leader" will be awarded $5,000 as a special recognition. Each winning group and the outstanding educator also will receive a Fujifilm digital camera. Project submissions should demonstrate significant accomplishments completed by the December 19, 2003, deadline. To learn more about the 2004 SeaWorld/Busch Gardens/Fujifilm Environmental Excellence Awards, visit: www.seaworld.org/conservation-matters/eea Exit EPA Disclaimer. For information about how you, your school or student group could win both money and recognition, call toll-free 1-877-792-4332.

10) State Monitoring, Assessment, and Reporting Program Grants and Cooperative Agreements - Request for Proposals

EPA recently announced the availability of $4 million for State Monitoring, Assessment and Reporting Program Grants and Cooperative Agreements. The purpose is to provide eligible applicants an opportunity to participate in a demonstration project to apply a consistent set of monitoring protocols to characterize the extent of wadeable rivers and streams that are in healthy or degraded condition at the ecoregion level II scale. EPA expects to award between 20 and 40 assistance agreements ranging in value from $50,000 to $500,000. Pre-proposals will be due December 19, 2003. Applicants may include states, tribes, and other organizations eligible for Clean Water Act section 104(b)(3) funding, such as interstate commissions and associations, universities, municipalities, and non-profit organizations. This effort will provide the public with important information about the nation's aquatic resources and wadeable streams. For more information about this grant, go to http://www.epa.gov/owow/monitoring/rfp/index.html.[BROKEN]

Chesapeake Bay Program, A Watershed Partnership logo11) The Chesapeake Bay Small Watershed Grants Program

The Chesapeake Bay Small Watershed Grants Program provides grants to organizations working on a local level to protect and improve watersheds in the Chesapeake Bay basin, while building citizen-based resource stewardship. The purpose of the grants program is to address the water quality and living resource needs of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. Under last year's program, 75 projects from across the Bay watershed (out of approximately 130 applications) received grants. Grants ranged in size from $5,000 to $50,000, and also included five Community Legacy Grants of $100,000. Under the 2004 Chesapeake Bay Small Watershed Grants Program, grants of up to $50,000 will again be awarded on a competitive basis to support projects that meet the program guidelines. For more information, visit the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation's web site at http://www.nfwf.org/chesapeake/index.htm [BROKEN]Exit EPA Disclaimer. Proposals are due February 2, 2004.

Mention of any commercial product, publications, reports, etc. does not constitute endorsement or recommendation for use by EPA. Please send any comments, complaints, suggestions, and ideas to Patty Scott at scott.patricia@epa.


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