Monday, July 16th, 2012

EPA Awards Grant to Cleveland Botanical Garden to Use Vacant Lots to Protect Water Quality

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded $59,680 under its Urban Waters Small Grants program to the Cleveland Botanical Garden to improve vacant land in Cleveland neighborhoods and reduce stormwater runoffto Lake Erie and its tributaries.

“EPA’s Urban Waters program provides grants to protect and improve water quality and revitalize urban areas,” said EPA Regional Administrator Susan Hedman. “This grant will help to improve water quality in Lake Erie and transform vacant lots in Cleveland neighborhoods.”

The Botanical Garden will cover 12 vacant lots with a mixture of dredge material, wood chips and compost, and plant low-maintenance groundcover. These efforts will improve soil nutrient levels, reduce lead toxicity in soil and reduce stormwater runoff. The deep roots of low-maintenance lawns absorb more water than regular grass and stabilize soil, preventing erosion. The improved appearance of the lots will help stabilize neighborhoods and reduce the city’s maintenance costs associated with mowing and caring for vacant urban land.

people with cameras in green area

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