WASHINGTON — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced the award of two Great Lakes Restoration Initiative grants, to the cities of Racine and Milwaukee, to fund green infrastructure projects to improve water quality in Lake Michigan, according to a press release.
Racine received a $250,000 grant, noted the release, to be used in combination with funding from the City ($101,190) and the Fund for Lake Michigan ($167,100), to construct green infrastructure projects in two city parks on the shore of Lake Michigan and install a series of bioswales and bioretention basins to capture and filter stormwater before it is discharged into the lake.
Milwaukee received a $1 million grant, reported the release, to be used in combination with $2.1 million in city funding, to install porous pavement that will filter stormwater and reduce the amount of untreated runoff discharged to the Kinnickinnic, Menomonee and Milwaukee Rivers that flow into the Milwaukee Estuary Area of Concern and Lake Michigan.
“[Racine and Milwaukee] will use this EPA Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Shoreline Cities Green Infrastructure grant to prevent storm water from carrying contamination into Lake Michigan,” said Great Lakes National Program Manager Susan Hedman. “These green infrastructure projects will also help protect against flooding during more frequent and intense storms which may occur as a result of climate change.”
According to the release, the two cities are two of 16 cities to receive funding in the initial round of EPA’s new Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Shoreline Cities grant program, which can be used to fund up to 50 percent of the cost of green infrastructure projects on public property.