October 6, 2011
Grant to Help Reduce Pollution, Restore Henrico Stream
Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Community Partners to Focus on Upham Brook
(RICHMOND, VA.)—The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) has received a $150,000 grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) to implement a community partnership project aimed at reducing pollution in the Upham Brook watershed.
The NFWF grant, announced yesterday in Washington, D.C., will allow CBF to partner with Henrico County and several community groups to do on-the-ground pollution reduction and restoration projects, provide outreach and watershed education to homeowners, and create a model for implementing local Chesapeake Bay cleanup plans.
"We are very grateful to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation for this important funding, which will empower citizens throughout the Upham Brook watershed to become better stewards of clean water," said Ann F. Jennings, CBF Virginia executive director. "It is only through such holistic, community-based efforts, focused upon individual neighborhood streams, that Henrico and localities across Virginia will succeed in achieving the Commonwealth's Chesapeake Bay cleanup goals."
Grant plans include designing and installing innovative stormwater runoff projects, rain gardens, floating wetlands, pet waste stations, streamside vegetated buffers, stream and roadside cleanups, invasive species removal, and citizen engagement in watershed stewardship. Other partners include Virginia Master Naturalists, Henrico County Master Gardeners, the Friends of Bryan Park, the James River Association, and the Center for Watershed Protection.
Upham Brook, which originates in central Henrico, flows through Richmond's Bryan Park and empties into the Chickahominy River, the James River, and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay, is polluted by bacteria and other runoff contaminants, according to the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality. The state has prepared a cleanup plan for the stream, and Henrico has adopted an innovative watershed management approach to improving water quality that the grant project will complement.
The grant project is similar to other successful whole-community watershed efforts that CBF is helping lead in the Lafayette River watershed in Norfolk, the Onancock Creek watershed in Accomack County, and the Smith Creek watershed in the Shenandoah Valley.