Ohio EPA Awards Grant Money To Southeastern Ohio Counties

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The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency has awarded more than $600,000 in grant money to Southeast Ohio communities.

The Huff Run Watershed Restoration Partnership in Tuscarawas County received $326,900 to reclaim 10 acres impacted by coal mining spoils, while the Ohio Valley Conservation Coalition received $285,900 to protect and restore Salt Creek in Jackson County.

The grants are just two of 12 totaling more than $2.7 million awarded by the Ohio EPA to help communities restore waterways affected by nonpoint source pollution.

"That's the leading cause of water quality impairment in Ohio, and what nonpoint source pollution is, it's caused by rain or snow melt moving over and through the ground, kind of picking up natural and human-made pollutants and putting them in lakes and rivers and wetlands and other waterways," said Erin Strouse, spokeswoman with the Ohio EPA.
Strouse says this pollution can have a harmful effect on drinking water supplies, wildlife, and recreation.

Successful completion of both projects will result in reduced nonpoint source pollutants, including an estimated reduction of 142 pounds of phosphorus, 361 pounds of metal, and 1,475 pounds of acid per year.