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EPA distributes funding for water quality monitoring in Oregon, Washington, Ohio

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SEATTLE and CHICAGO, OCT 17, 2017 -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded more than $43M to water systems in Oregon, Washington, and Ohio.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality was awarded nearly $2 million to protect water quality through a Nonpoint Source Program Clean Water Act (Section 319) cooperative agreement. This grant is given to states to implement environmental programs that address nonpoint source pollution in surface and groundwater in order to meet and maintain water quality standards.

"Providing funds directly to Oregon is an excellent example of EPA partnering with states to help address their unique and critical environmental challenges," said EPA Administrator Pruitt. "EPA is making investments like this grant to help empower states who know best how to protect resources, and grow their economy while solving real environmental problems in local communities."

Under this program, a total of 23 proposals were selected, including continuous water quality monitoring and flow data.

"This EPA funding helps ensure many more miles of Oregon's rivers, lakes and streams will enjoy the protections they deserve," said ODEQ Director Richard Whitman. "These kinds of projects give local restoration efforts the helping hand needed to make a positive and meaningful difference where people live, work and play...around water!"

In Washington, over $41 million was awarded to the state's clean water and drinking water revolving funds to help finance improvements to water projects that will reduce water pollution, improve municipal drinking water and wastewater infrastructure, make projects more sustainable by increasing water and energy efficiency, and provide technical assistance to communities.

A total of $550,000 was also awarded to the Lorain County (Ohio) Board of Commissioners for projects that will improve water quality in the Black River Area of Concern on Lake Erie. The Black River AOC is on the binational list of toxic hotspots that have been targeted for cleanup under the U.S.-Canadian Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. The funding is a supplemental award to an existing grant of $600,000, increasing the total amount to just over $1 million.

"As Administrator, I'm committed to improving environmental conditions and human health for the 30 million Americans who live and work in the Great Lakes region," said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. "EPA is working closely with state and local partners to advance our shared goal to restore the Great Lakes ecosystem."

"This grant award continues the County's and its partners' commitment to manage its resources and improve the environment culminating in the goal of having our river no longer be listed as an AOC. The Black River's improved water quality has it online to complete all management actions in 2019," said Lori Kokoski, Lorain County Board President

Learn more at epa.gov.

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