Funding is available through the Michigan Community Pollution Prevention (P2) Grant Program for the development of ongoing household drug collection programs. These programs should include strategies and projects that promote environmental stewardship and awareness through the collection and incineration of unused household medications. The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will provide matching grants to non-profit organizations, local and tribal governments, local health departments, municipalities, and regional planning agencies to fund drug collection programs.
Evidence of pharmaceutical waste has been detected in groundwater and drinking water in the Great Lakes region. The technologies and equipment required to remove these compounds from drinking and waste water are expensive and are currently not widely deployed by communities. Successful drug collection programs will prevent pharmaceutical waste from being released into and accumulating in the environment and reduce the incidence of abuse of prescription drugs. The purpose of these grants is to increase public access to free, convenient, safe and environmentally optimal drug collection programs, and to foster the development of successful models and approaches that can be implemented in other areas of the state.
A total of $250,000 in funding is available. A match requirement of at least 25 percent has been established by law. Applications are due March 30. More details available at the MDEQ website.
Luke Forrest is Project Coordinator for the Green Communities Challenge. Contact him by email or follow him on Twitter.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency expects to award between $1.8 to $3.8 million in funding for projects across the country to help restore urban waters by improving water quality and supporting community revitalization. EPA will host webinars about this opportunity December 14 and January 5.
The funding is part of EPA’s Urban Waters program, which supports communities in their efforts to access, improve, and benefit from their urban waters and the surrounding land. Healthy and accessible urban waters can help grow local businesses and enhance educational, recreational and employment opportunities in nearby communities. The goal of the Urban Waters Small Grants program is to fund studies, training, and demonstration projects that will advance the restoration of urban waters by improving water quality through activities that also support community revitalization and other local priorities such as public health, social and economic opportunities, general livability and environmental justice for residents.
Examples of projects eligible for funding include: education and training, water quality monitoring, watershed plans and innovative water quality projects. Information about Urban Waters Small Grants including the Request for Proposal (RFP) and registration links for the webinars is available at http://www.epa.gov/urbanwaters/funding. EPA expects to award the grants in Summer 2012. Deadline for submitting proposals: January 23, 2012.
Michigan communities large and small are leading the way in natural resource conservation. The Village of Paw Paw proved that yet again this week by winning the National Rural Water Association's award for "Exemplary Efforts in Environmental Protection". The award was presented at the National Rural Water Association’s Tribute to Excellence awards ceremony, held on September 27, 2010 in New Orleans. Paw Paw already won the same award from the Michigan chapter earlier this year.
Village Manager Larry Nielsen said "We are proud to receive this award. The recognition for our efforts at protecting our ground water supply and educating people about where their water comes from is greatly appreciated."
Congratulations to Paw Paw and all the members of the community who contribute to its water conservation programs. For more information on how Michigan communities can lead the way on environmental initiatives, visit the the Green Communities Challenge.
Luke Forrest is Program Coordinator for the Center for 21st Century Communities. Contact him at 734-669-6323.