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North Carolina Receives More Than $4 Million to Protect Watersheds

Release Date: 11/29/2005
Contact Information:

November 29, 2005

Contact: Laura Niles, niles.laura@epa.gov, Phone: (404) 562-8353

The North Carolina Department of Environmental and Natural Resources (NC DENR) has been awarded $4,665,700 in nonpoint source (NPS) pollution grant funds by EPA to assist state agencies and colleges, city and county governments, and local authorities protect and restore North Carolina watersheds. This Clean Water Act grant provides funding to help make water safe for drinking, swimming, boating, and eating fish and shellfish.

This NPS pollution grant will help restore waters that are listed as impaired by NPS pollution and identify methods to control pollution from a variety of potential sources in North Carolina waters. Through a basin-wide management planning initiative, NC DENR identifies impaired waters and recommends watershed-based approaches to address NPS pollution. Specifically, the program seeks to address major categories of potential NPS pollution through a combination of education, technical and financial assistance, and/or regulations. Implementation activities include urban stormwater runoff controls, low impact development, agricultural best management practices, riparian buffers, ground water protection, solid waste management and control of NPS pollution from land disposal sites, agriculture, and on-site waste water disposal. NC DENR is also working with other agencies to implement pollution budgets known as Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs).

NPS pollution, also known as polluted runoff, is the largest cause of water pollution in the U.S. and originates from many sources. As rainfall flows across the landscape, it accumulates contaminants on the ground and erodes exposed soil and deposits it into rivers, lakes, ground water, wetlands, and coastal areas. EPA empowers states, tribes, organizations, and stakeholders to work together in order to achieve better water quality through a watershed basis.

Since the establishment of the Nonpoint Source Management Program under the Clean Water Act in 1987, EPA has provided to state, territory, and tribal partners more than $1.6 billion in federal funding alone, to protect and restore our nation’s waters. For more information about efforts to control NPS pollution in North Carolina, the Southeast and around the nation, please visit: http://www.epa.gov/region4/water/nps/ .

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