Contact Us

Newsroom

2013 News Releases

 

Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Funding Improves Water Quality at Northwest Indiana Beaches

Release Date: 07/02/2013
Contact Information: Peter Cassell, 312-886-6234, cassell.peter@epa.gov

No. 13-OPA024

CHICAGO – Great Lakes beaches were open 94 percent of the time last summer, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2012 BEACH report. EPA’s Beaches Environmental Assessment and Coastal Health Report is available at: http://water.epa.gov/type/oceb/beaches/2012_season.cfm.

“The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is improving water quality so that people can enjoy more days at Northwest Indiana beaches,” said Susan Hedman, EPA’s Regional Administrator / Great Lakes National Program Manager. “Great Lakes Restoration Initiative-funded projects make beaches safer by eliminating sources of harmful contamination and by monitoring water quality to protect beachgoers.”

The major sources of contamination that affect Great Lakes beaches are sewer system overflows, stormwater runoff and waste from boats, septic systems, and wildlife.

Since 2010, 10 Great Lakes Restoration Initiative-funded projects, totaling nearly $4 million, have been implemented to improve water quality at Northwest Indiana beaches:


Project TitleRecipientYearFunding AmountProject Description
Calumet & Ivanhoe South Ridge and Swale, INDept. of Defense-U.S. Army Corps of Engineers2010$1,078,000 This project is located in Lake Station and Gary, Indiana. This project is currently under construction and is restoring 194 acres of globally rare ridge and swale complex, globally rare sand prairie and marsh in Grand Calumet Area of Concern. The restoration of hydrology via the removal of invasive trees, such as cotton woods and peach leafed willows has provided conditions for the state listed adder`s tongue fern to return to the site. FY10, FY11 and FY12 GLRI funds have been used for feasibility-level study and construction of the project.
Center for Transformation of Waste Technology and Hammond Sanitary DistrictCenter for Transformation of Waste Technology2010$320,000 Project supports the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, pursuant to Public Law 111-88. This project will: conserve water for municipal and industrial supplies; replenish groundwater that flows to Lake Michigan by reusing 38 million gallons per day of treated effluent discharged by the Hammond, Indiana Sanitary District; and recycle over three million pounds of reclaimed nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium per year. This project represents Phase 2 of a multi-phased Water Reuse Project and involves planning, developing the engineering designs, and conducting topographic surveys that will be needed to convey millions of gallons of secondarily treated wastewater into selected locations within the three-county urban area of Northwest Indiana. This project will eliminate the discharge of pollutants into the Grand Calumet River Area of Concern and Lake Michigan.
Grand Calumet River Area of Concern RestorationIndiana Department of Environmental Management2010$1,398,248 This project will restore approximately 230 acres of wildlife habitat within the Grand Calumet River Area of Concern. This project will improve the quality and increase the acreage of suitable habitat for wildlife, including migratory birds, by controlling woody and herbaceous invasive plant species within the dune and swale ecosystem. This restoration project will improve conditions for the federally endangered Karner blue butterfly and other non-game wildlife species.
Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program - IndianaU.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Direct Implementation2010$38,800 Partners for Fish and Wildlife is a voluntary habitat restoration program of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The PFW Program works with landowners and other partners to restore habitat on private lands. Focus is on restoring wetlands and grasslands to benefit migratory birds and federally-listed threatened and endangered species. The basin-wide program goal for GLRI is to restore 500 acres of wetlands and 500 acres of grasslands.
Calumet & Ivanhoe South Ridge and Swale, INDept. of Defense-U.S. Army Corps of Engineers2011$100,000 This project is located in Lake Station and Gary, Indiana. This project is currently under construction and is restoring 194 acres of globally rare ridge and swale complex, globally rare sand prairie and marsh in Grand Calumet Area of Concern. The restoration of hydrology via the removal of invasive trees, such as cotton woods and peach leafed willows has provided conditions for the state listed adder`s tongue fern to return to the site. FY10, FY11 and FY12 GLRI funds have been used for feasibility-level study and construction of the project.
Calumet & Ivanhoe South Ridge and Swale, INDept. of Defense-U.S. Army Corps of Engineers2012$425,000 This project is located in Lake Station and Gary, Indiana. This project is currently under construction and is restoring 194 acres of globally rare ridge and swale complex, globally rare sand prairie and marsh in Grand Calumet Area of Concern. The restoration of hydrology via the removal of invasive trees, such as cotton woods and peach leafed willows has provided conditions for the state listed adder`s tongue fern to return to the site. FY10, FY11 and FY12 GLRI funds have been used for feasibility-level study and construction of the project.
Deep River, INDept. of Defense-U.S. Army Corps of Engineers2012$25,000 The Deep River is a tributary to the Little Calumet River and Lake Michigan. The project is located primarily in Gary, Indiana with a small portion in Lake Station, Indiana. This project may involve the removal of a dam for fish passage and riverine restoration and restoring the hydrology within the 80 acre riparian parcel that consists of wet and mesic woodland dotted wetland pockets. FY12 GLRI funds are being used for feasibility-level study of the project which may be ready to start construction in FY15.
Lake George Wetlands Restoration and Invasive Species Control (IN)Indiana Department of Natural Resources2012$121,000 The project will restore 92 acres of wetlands in northern Lake County, Indiana in the northeast portion of the Grand Calumet River Area of Concern, by controlling monotypic invasive species. The project will increase the amount and quality of nesting and foraging habitat available to resident and migratory bird populations in the Grand Calumet River Area of Concern.
Marquette Park Lagoon Green Stormwater Management InitiativeNorthwest Indiana Regional Development Authority2012$351,743 The Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority will partner with the City of Gary and the Student Conservation Association to create a conservation corps to implement green stormwater best management practices in the Marquette Park Lagoon watershed. The lagoon is impacted by sedimentation and nutrient runoff from stormwater outflows originating in the Miller neighborhood of Gary, Indiana. The project will create jobs for unemployed residents in the area while reducing nutrient and sediment loading to the Marquette Park Lagoons.
Marquette Park, INDept. of Defense-U.S. Army Corps of Engineers2012$100,000 This project is located in Gary, Indiana on Lake Michigan`s coast. The project could restore the east lagoon including its shoreline and island, foredunes, wetland pannes, and oak savanna. The goal of the project is to restore habitat that will support a large variety of invertebrates, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, and migratory birds. FY12 GLRI funds are being used for feasibility-level study of the project which may be ready to start construction in FY15.

The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative was launched at the start of President Obama’s first term to coordinate the work of 16 federal agencies to protect and restore the Great Lakes. More information about the Initiative, including an interactive project map, is available at www.glri.us.