2003 Fall Project Grants

2003 Fall Project Grants

Youth Ecology and Science Club

Amount: $2000

Project Title: Campaign to Protect Washington Park Lagoon (Chicago, IL) from Toxic Hazards

Project Description:


Highway J Citizens Group

Amount: $2900

Project Title: Grasssroots Initiative to Stop An Environmentally-Destructive Road Expansion Project in Wisconsin

Project Description: The project will continue work to stop the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s Highway J/164 four-lane expansion project and the Ackerville Bridge/Lovers Lane Reconstruction Project.  Stopping these environmentally-destructive projects will protect precious wetland areas along the 22-mile long Highway J/164 corridor where several endangered and threatened animal and plant species now live.


Environmentally Concerned Citizens of the Lakeland Area

Amount: $2500

Project Title: Shoreland Connection Toolkit and Advocacy Campaign

Project Description: A multi-media advocacy campaign will be implemented to protect shoreland habitats in the Great Lakes watershed in Wisconsin.  Timely and accurate information on the relationship of shorelands to clean water, good fishing, scenic beauty, and a healthy economy will be disseminated through a CD and website, The Shoreland Connection.  This toolkit will be publicized via press releases, PSAs, ads, displays, and presentations.  An outreach specialist will develop advocates.  Project goals are to promote individual shoreland stewardship actions and to activate constituencies for more protective local and statewide shoreland zoning rules.


North Shore Watershed Watch-MN Environmental Partners

Amount: $3000

Project Title: Power Analysis of Citizen Opportunities to Shape Policy on Minnesota's North Shore

Project Description: Study of all decision-making bodies related to development issues in the three county area of the Minnesota North Shore, as well as a list of recommendations for how citizens can best influence development decisions to minimize environmental impacts.  This study will be a strategic tool to focus growing awareness among North Shore residents and visitors that the health of the aquatic resources of our region are intertwined with land-use decisions.


Friends of the Detroit River

Amount: $3300

Project Title: Partners Fighting the Riverview Trenton Railroad and Supporting the Wildlife Refuge

Project Description: A grassroots initiative will work to halt an industrial project rivaling the size of Ford’s Rouge Complex, the Riverview Trenton Railroad (RTRR), in the heart of the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge.  This Deep Water Port/Rail Head will be used to import foreign garbage.  Collaborating groups and a Speakers’ Bureau will fight the RTRR and take on similar challenges in the future; advocating for habitat protection and support for the Refuge


Friends of the Salmon River

Amount: $3000

Project Title: Protect Deer Creek Marsh, Selkirk Fen, the Salmon River and it's estuary

Project Description: The project includes action against the NYS DEC, Town of Richland Planning Board and Brennan Beach Corp., Pulaski, NY to prevent serious and irreversible harm to the unique natural resources of the Salmon River, Selkirk Fen, Deer Creek Marsh, to several endangered and threatened animal and plant species, resulting from the unlawful construction of a project known as “Brennan Greens.”  The project involves the construction and operation of a nine-hole golf course, clubhouse, 375-site RV campground and sewage treatment facility on 200 acres directly adjacent to Deer Creek Marsh and Selkirk Fen, part of which extend onto the project site.


People in Need of Environmental Safety

Amount: $3500

Project Title: PINES Citizen Empowerment Project

Project Description: Working to stop ground and surface water pollution currently plaguing the Town of Pines in Indiana and Brown Ditch, which flows into the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.  Contamination from coal power plant wastes dumped in the nearby Yard 520 landfill and used as fill throughout the town has polluted ground and surface waters to levels toxic to human and aquatic life.  Through grassroots organizing, media work, and legal action, the citizens of Pines hope to stop the flow of pollution into the local ground water aquifer and Brown Ditch.



Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve Inc.

Amount: $2000

Project Title: Hydrology Pan – Yellow Dog Plains

Project Description: The project will develop a hydrology plan for the study and research of the Yellow Dog Plains aquifer.  This is important as an international mining company is exploring a sulfide based ore body on the Yellow Dog Plains in Northern Marquette County of Michigan.  One ore body resides directly below the headwaters of the Salmon Trout River, which shares common waters with the Yellow Dog River and is the habitat of the last native Coaster Brook Trout on the south shore of Lake Superior.


Waukegan Harbor Citizens’s  Advisory Group

Amount: $1500

Project Title: Waukegan Harbor CAG Public Outreach Funding Request

Project Description: Effectively communicate with the citizens of Lake County, and especially those within the Environmental Justice communities.  This communication will be implemented through the purchase of a dedicated computer and printer for the group and funding for cataloging the Waukegan Harbor Area of Concern documents in the local library.


Residents for Responsible Government

Amount: $3000

Project Title: Protecting the Lake Ontario Watershed and the Health of the Community

Project Description: The project involves a lawsuit and public education and awareness of the potential impact of the diversion of Twelve-Mile Creek for the proposed expansion of Chemical Waste Management, a toxic waste dump.  It is feared that any disturbance of the creek may result in contamination being released and eventually finding its way into Lake Ontario.  The creek lies in a 100 year floodplain and relocation of the creek may have significant impact both upstream and downstream of the site.


Citizens Environment Watch

Amount: $2500

Project Title: Changing Currents in the Greater Toronto Area: Strengthening Citizen Involvement in Aquatic Habitat Protection

Project Description: The project will educate young people at the grassroots level about the importance of biodiversisty and our connection to local and regional aquatic ecosystems, and in methods to monitor the health of these ecosystems.  The purpose is also to collect data about local water quality in order to determine priority areas and causes of impairment and develop a baseline data set to track trends over time at a local level, and across the Great Lakes Basin.  Finally, the project will help youth identify local areas of concern, and help them develop projects to protect and restore the areas of concern.


Erie Streams Association of Volunteer Monitors

Amount: $2000

Project Title: Watershed Awareness and Community Involvement Project

Project Description: The project will increase the quantity of streams being monitored and quality of data collected in the Lake Erie Basin of Erie County, Pennsylvania.  The project will increase stakeholder awareness, provide standardized protocols, convey information to the public, and promote stewardship and understanding.


White Earth Land Recovery Project

Amount: $2500

Project Title: Manoomin Ogitchidaag (Defending the Rice) Community Outreach Campaign

Project Description: A community/tribal campaign that targets tribes in the Great Lakes Region to protect sacred manoomin.  Manoomin (wild rice) is endangered by pollution from paddy runoff; genetic contamination through crossbreeding with genetically modified wild rice, patenting and genetic exploitation.  The goal is to organize extensive outreach to Native communities in the Great Lakes Region, specifically Canada, and to continue our organizing efforts in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan, to address threats to wild rice and issues of bio-diversity, and to encourage proactive work by tribes.


Minnesotans for Responsible Recreation

Amount: $3000

Project Title: Empowering Citizens to Protect Wetlands from Off-Road Vehicle Damage

Project Description: This project trains citizens to delineate wetlands and to recognize and document wetland impacts resulting from off-road vehicle (ORV) use and trail development.  The project assembles this documentation for distribution to the public, public officials, and media to hold government agencies and off-road vehicle clubs accountable for protecting and restoring wetlands.



Troy Wildlife & Wetlands

Amount: $2000

Project Title: Grassroots Activism to Protect Aquatic Habitats in the City of Troy, Michigan

Project Description: The goal of this project is to protect the last large wetland complex in the city of Troy, Michigan.  The plan is to meet with local officials to propose partnerships and alternatives to subdivision development in this area of the city.  Specifically, they the project will propose the creation of a linear park that would connect existing parks within the city with the wetlands areas and establish a wetland mitigation land bank.


Taxpayers Against Airport Growth-Watershed Watchers

Amount: $2700

Project Title: Grassroots Citizen Opposition to the City of West Bend Airport Expansion

Project Description: The Wisconsin Department of Transportation and the City of West Bend intend to expand the municipal airport into a jetport.  The Preliminary Environmental Assessment indicates that the project directly or indirectly impacts 106 acres of Biotic Communities, 54 acres of Wetlands, 69 acres of Floodplain Fringe, and 297 acres of Cropland and Woodland.  The airport is in a floodplain wetland between Highway 33 and the Milwaukee River, and the expansion represents the largest single-site wetland fill in Wisconsin since 1991.  An active group of area citizens is gathering information and support to stop this expensive and unjustifiable project.



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Images courtesy of Steven Huyser-Honig,
West Grand Boulevard Collaborative, & Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve.