EPA, Chesapeake Bay Trust to provide green infrastructure initiative grants

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WASHINGTON, D.C., July 29, 2013 -- The Chesapeake Bay Trust and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have announced $400,000 in funding to be provided to seven municipalities and nonprofit organizations in Maryland, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania through the Green Streets, Green Jobs, Green Towns Initiative (G3).

Jointly funded by the Trust and EPA, G3 supports green infrastructure projects that improve water quality, community livability and economic vitality throughout the region. The grantees and their green infrastructure projects were recently unveiled at the site of the new Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Washington, D.C., also the location of one of the grant-funded green infrastructure projects.

"Local governments around the country are seeing the benefits of utilizing green infrastructure for controlling stormwater," said EPA Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin. "G3 grantees are leading the way -- providing valuable examples to others on the road to creating sustainable communities and healthy watersheds."

G3 was created in 2011 to support projects that reduce stormwater runoff through the creation of "green streets." A green street is one that minimizes the environmental impact of a roadway by practices such as reducing the amount of water that is piped directly into streams and rivers; creating rain gardens; installing street tree canopy; using energy efficient lighting; and encouraging pedestrian and bicycle access. Green streets also provide aesthetic and economic benefits.

"The Chesapeake Bay Trust is pleased to partner with EPA to promote green infrastructure practices that not only improve water quality but also positively benefit local communities." said Jana Davis, Executive Director of the Chesapeake Bay Trust. "Our goal is to leverage gray infrastructure projects that a community already plans to undertake, such as roadway reengineering. By adding the green component during the construction process, it minimizes costs while improving results."

The G3 effort was developed under President Obama's Chesapeake Bay Executive Order to provide assistance to communities in urbanized watersheds for reducing stormwater runoff; improving energy conservation; promoting livable communities; and, creating green jobs.

Today seven grants were announced totaling $400,000 in funding to municipalities and nonprofit organizations in Maryland, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania.

The Green Streets, Green Jobs, Green Towns grant program is open to local governments and nonprofit organizations interested in pursuing urban green stormwater infrastructure and green jobs as part of an overall integrated community or watershed plan. The initiative, administered by the Chesapeake Bay Trust, supports President Obama’s Executive Order for Protecting and Restoring the Chesapeake Bay through the creation of “green streets.”

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