URI Cooperative Extension receives grants
for water quality initiatives
KINGSTON, R.I. -- November 17, 2000 -- The University of Rhode Island
Cooperative Extension has been awarded two grants totaling $1.4 million
to foster water quality protection programs at the regional and national
levels. In addition, a $1 million grant announced last spring addresses
water quality issues locally.
"These three projects will draw on the expertise of Cooperative
Extension staff and faculty from the Natural Resources Science Department
to integrate research with education to improve water quality around the
country," said Arthur Gold, director of URI's Water Quality Program.
"All three projects are related, so each will benefit from the lessons
and advances of the others."
With a $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, URI
will lead a consortium of New England universities in the creation of a
unified program that will focus on volunteer water quality monitoring, municipal
watershed protection, residential pollution prevention, and best management
practices in agriculture. This effort will target watersheds of designated
National Estuaries, American Heritage River Corridors, National Heritage
River Corridors, and other priority watersheds in the region.
In conjunction with the University of Wisconsin, URI was awarded a $400,000
grant to develop training materials, establish a website, and build a comprehensive
support system for the network of volunteer water quality monitoring programs
at universities across the country. URI's Watershed Watch Program, which
uses volunteers to monitor water quality at lakes and ponds throughout Rhode
Island, is one such program.
"This effort will result in stronger and more active data sharing
among water quality monitoring programs around the U.S., and will serve
as a national model," said Gold. Funding comes from the Cooperative
State Research Education and Extension Service.
The third project, already under way, is a national demonstration project
funded by the Environmental Protection Agency that aims to reduce the risks
of coastal pollution from residential wastewater in the towns of Charlestown,
South Kingstown and New Shoreham.
For Information: Arthur Gold 874-2903, Todd McLeish 874-7892