2013 Stream Cleanup Grants Awarded

VRSCCP-Photo-grants-cleanup3Twenty organizations have been selected to receive 2013 Volunteer River, Stream and Creek Cleanup grants totaling more than $39,000 to be awarded by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ).

Michigan’s Volunteer River, Stream, and Creek Cleanup Program (VRSCCP) provides small grants in the range of $500 to $5,000 to local units of government to help implement cleanup of trash and debris within or along the banks of rivers, streams, and creeks to improve the waters in Michigan. Grant applications were received, reviewed and assessed by Great Lakes Commission and DEQ; award notices went out to grantees in April 2013.

Funding for the VRSCCP is provided by DEQ through fees collected from the sale of the State’s Water Quality Protection license plates (Public Act 74 of 2000). The Great Lakes Commission administers the VRSCCP on behalf of the DEQ.

Groups selected to receive funding in 2013:

  • City of Charlotte – 9th Annual River Cleanup Day, $838.65

To clean up and improve approximately 1.5 miles along Butternut Creek and 2 miles along the Battle Creek River within the City of Charlotte and to educate the public about the importance of such efforts.

  • Germfask Township – Manistique River Clean Up, $845

To clean high use areas where wildlands and people interact; raise awareness of the river, its recreational opportunities, and the need to maintain these areas; and increase the appeal of Germfask and the Seney National Wildlife Refuge as a destination.

  • City of Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation Services – A2 Keeping the River Clean, $3,254

To keep a 7-mile stretch of the Huron River free of trash throughout the summer season while building knowledge and understanding of the river and its ecosystem among groups of volunteers who will become stewards of the river now and in the future.

  • Tuscola Conservation District – 5th Annual Cass River Cleanup, $600

To clean a 5-7 mile section of the river from the dam in the City of Vassar to M-46, removing trash, tires, and scrap metal.

  • Barry Conservation District – 18th Annual Thornapple River Clean Up, $1,800

To remove all safely accessible trash from the water and along the banks along 85 river miles while recruiting volunteers from at least six watershed communities.

  • Macatawa Area Coordinating Council – Macatawa River Volunteer Cleanup, $1,000

To clean 2 miles of stream by removing trash, polystyrene, old tires, construction materials, and assorted plastics, while educating volunteers on water quality issues.

  • City of Evart – Muskegon River Cleanup, $2,175

To conduct a river cleanup day along 9 river miles through the City of Evart to a landing near Benzing Road in Osceola County.

  • St. Joseph County Conservation District – River Clean Up Project 2013, $2,750

To implement the third stage of a 5-year plan to clean all 150 miles of the county’s rivers, cleaning roughly 29 miles in 2013.

  • City of Grand Rapids – 10th Annual Mayors’ Grand River Cleanup, $4,500

To remove waste from the Grand River, promote water quality, and increase West Michigan’s aesthetic appeal, making the Grand River and its tributaries a safer and cleaner place for West Michigan residents and an inviting place for visitors.

  • Hillsdale Conservation District – Headwaters River Clean-up Project, $2,653

To target the St. Joseph River, Kalamazoo River, Grand River, and River Raisin watersheds for trash removal, including 12 of the 18 townships, 264 square miles of land, and 70 miles of flowing main stream water from their heads to their exit of the county.

  • Van Buren Conservation District – River Rescue 2013, $2,360

To improve the water quality and vitality of local creeks, stream banks, and the health and biodiversity of critical wildlife populations and habitats by removing anthropogenic sources of trash and debris from approximately 13-25 miles of waterway, while raising environmental concerns and water quality issues with participants on a personal level.

  • Shiawassee County Health Department – 16th Annual Shiawassee River Clean-up, $1,875

To remove trash and debris from the mainstem of the Shiawassee River from Byron to Oakley, targeting rural areas for tires and large debris items.

  • City of Battle Creek - 2013 Global Citizens River Conservation Day, $1,500

To promote the protection of the water resources within the Kalamazoo River watershed, promote the beauty of the water resource, encourage continued stewardship of the resource, and participate in an international cleanup effort through the removal of trash and debris from the water and along the river’s banks.

  • Calhoun Conservation District – Klean the Kazoo, $2,570

To carry out a cleanup along a 2.5-4 mile section of the Kalamazoo River from the Whitehouse Nature Center at Albion College to the City of Albion’s Rieger Park, while increasing volunteer participation for the event.

  • Jackson County Drain Commissioner – Portage River Volunteer Cleanup, $1,145

To restore the Portage River, and the Upper Grand River which it feeds into, to meet Michigan Water Quality Standards, while removing trash and debris from approximately 10 miles and increasing public awareness of the issues affecting the Upper Grand River and improving recreational opportunities on the Portage River.

  • Monroe Conservation District – River Raisin Rubbish Removal, $2,538.91

To clean a 10 mile section of the River Raisin and collect and dispose of tires.

  • Kent Conservation District – Rogue River Cleanup, $1,615.75

To improve the quality of the Rogue River by conducting a cleanup along approximately 3-5 miles of the river between the City of Rockford and Plainfield Township, and to engage the community and local media about cleanup efforts.

  • Genesee County Parks and Recreation Commission – Flint River Clean Up, $2,900

To remove unsightly debris from the banks of the Flint River at 17-20 sites across the Flint River watershed with the help of volunteers.

  • Grand Traverse Conservation District – 9th Annual Boardman River Clean Sweep 2013, $1,150

To conduct the 9th annual community-wide cleanup of the Boardman River in conjunction with the American Rivers’ National River Cleanup 2013 and the National Cherry Festival, including river and bank trash pick-up of human induced trash along all navigable segments of the River totaling approximately 30 miles.

  • Mason-Lake Conservation District – Pere Marquette Paddle Down-River Cleanup, $945

To pick up all litter along a 17 mile stretch of the Pere Marquette River and on the banks within sight of the river, instill a conservation ethic in tourists who use the upper reaches of the river, and promote the use of the lower reach for tourists who seek a more challenging paddle along the river.

View the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Press Release, dated April 4, 2013.

To inquire about specific volunteer opportunities, please visit our Calendar of Cleanup Events for contact information for each project.

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