Monday, June 29, 2009

Rain Gardens - Inexpensive & attractive treatment of stormwater runoff

A rain garden is a shallow depression in the ground that captures runoff from your driveway or roof and allows it to soak into the ground, rather than running across roads, capturing pollutants, and delivering them to nearby lakes and stream. Rain gardens are placed between stormwater runoff sources (roofs, driveways, parking lots) and runoff destinations (storm drains, streets, lakes, streams). Plants and soil work together to absorb and filter pollutants and return cleaner water through the ground to nearby streams.

Rain gardens are an inexpensive and attractive way to improve water quality and enhance the beauty of your yard or business.

North Carolina Cooperative Extension has developed an outstanding Web site that is dedicated to all aspects of building rain gardens. The website address is http://www.bae.ncsu.edu/topic/raingarden/

Sources:
Bridget Munger, Stormwater Outreach & Education Coordinator
N.C. Dept. of Environment & Natural Resources, Raleigh, NC

NC Cooperative Extension Rain Garden website

Friday, June 12, 2009

Wetland Program Development Grants Request for Proposals

On Friday May 29, 2009, EPA announced the release of the FY09 National Wetland Program Development Grants Request for Proposals (RFP). The total amount of expected federal funding available under this announcement
is approximately $550,000 and the federal portion of the awards will range from $25,000 to $225,000. Grants are awarded through Section 104(b)(3) of the Clean Water Act and are made to
build the capacity of all levels of government to develop and implement effective, comprehensive programs for wetland protection and management.

This year the RFP lists five national priority areas:
1) State/Tribal
Technical and Meeting Support;
2) Regulation;
3) Monitoring and Assessment;
4) Voluntary Restoration/Protection; and
5) Water Quality Standards for Wetlands.

The RFP will close at 7pm EDT on July 15, 2009, with decisions expected by the end of the fiscal year. The RFP can be viewed on the EPA wetlands website: http://www.epa.gov/owow/wetlands/pdf/HQrfp09.pdf

Source: Waterheadlines

4th Annual Adirondack Invasive Species Awareness Week is July 5 -11

The 4th Annual Adirondack Invasive Species Awareness Week is July 5 -11.  Awareness Week provides an opportunity to raise attention to invasive species and ways to stop their spread.  Groups across the region host activities locally which help to broaden the reach of our collective message. 

We're requesting that activities be submitted by June 24th so that we can alert media in advance.  Activities will be posted online at http://adkinvasives.com/InvasiveSpeciesAwarenessWeek.html.  

Need ideas?  Consider...
Plant pulls
Earthworm watches
Plant paddles
Forest pest trapping
Tips and tricks for I'd
Milfoil boat tours
Native plant landscaping
Free boat washing
River walks
Didymo dunk station
And more... 

We hope you will join in the effort during Awareness Week to protect the Adirondack region from invasive species. We look forward to hearing from you. 

Thank you! 
Hilary  

Hilary Smith
Director, Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program
The Nature Conservancy - Adirondack Chapter
PO Box 65
Keene Valley, New York 12943
518-576-2082 x 131 (tel)
518-576-4203 (fax)
hsmith@tnc.org
www.adkinvasives.com

Presidential initiative provides volunteers for your lake & watershed stewardship programs

SUBJECT: President's new service initiative provides opportunity to get new volunteers for your program - act quickly

Dear Watershed Organizations and Volunteer Monitoring Program Coordinators:

President Obama will soon be announcing a Summer of Service campaign which offers a new and exciting opportunity to help you build up your roster of volunteers and raise awareness about volunteer monitoring and watershed stewardship. This week the President will be encouraging nonprofit organizations with a need for volunteers to register at www.serve.gov.

On June 22, the President and his Cabinet will officially launch the Summer of Service and encourage Americans to volunteer for their communities. The President will direct potential volunteers to www.serve.gov to find local opportunities for service.

EPA is using this opportunity to promote volunteer monitoring and watershed stewardship. It is our hope that this Presidential initiative will encourage many more people to work to protect their watersheds.

Please consider registering your. program at www.serve.gov. You may get contacted by a number of volunteers eager to help your organization.

Think through what opportunities you might have for this summer, including monitoring workshops and events, debris cleanups, riparian restoration, community education, storm drain marking and other activities. If you want to sign up, you should do so as soon as possible, as a surge of web traffic is expected starting this week by
both organizations and individuals looking to get involved in volunteering this summer. However, if you're not quite prepared for a whole new cadre of volunteers, or for reporting the results of your summer volunteer activities at www.serve.gov, you may not want to sign up at this time. One of the goals of this effort will be sustainable volunteerism, so if you're not ready to sign up this summer, you can always do so later on.

Please go to www.serve.gov to register your program or for more information.
Thanks for all you do, every day.

If you have questions about this initiative, feel free to contact Alice
Mayio at mayio.alice@epa.gov.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

LAKE STEWARDS ON DUTY AGAIN AROUND LAKE GEORGE

June 2, 2009 Lake George, NY - Again this summer, lake stewards will be at boat launches around Lake George to educate boaters about invasive species spread prevention and to inspect boats.

Stewards will be located at Norowal Marina and Dunhams Bay Marina in the south end, and Mossy Point, Hague Town Launch, Gull Bay Town Launch, and Rogers Rock in the north end on various weekends.

"We have a great group of stewards working for us this summer. They all grew up in the area. They love Lake George, and want to give back by helping protect it this summer," said Emily DeBolt, the Lake George Association's Education and Outreach Coordinator.

DeBolt and the LGA coordinate the Lake George Lake Steward program on behalf of the Lake George Watershed Coalition. Training for the stewards, as well as data collection methods, are done in coordination with the Adirondack Watershed Institute at Paul Smiths College and the Lake Champlain Basin Program.

Already, the lake stewards are off to a great start this season, removing 6 plants from boats over Memorial Day Weekend at Norowal Marina. 3 were native plants, and 3 were invasive plants: Eurasian watermilfoil, Curly-leaf pondweed, and Water Chestnut.

Water Chestnut has widespread negative impacts on Lake Champlain, but the invasive weed is not currently found in Lake George.Last summer, the stewards inspected 2,964 boats at launches around the lake between Memorial Day and mid-August, removing a total of 61 specimens of aquatic invasive species.

In addition to inspecting boats and providing information about invasive species, the stewards ask boaters a number of questions as part of a survey, which will be used to gain a better understanding of how invasive species are spread and to gauge the public's knowledge on the issue.

As part of the survey, stewards ask what body of water the boat was last in. Last year, boaters reported having come from 159 different waterbodies in 19 different states before arriving at Lake George. 

Some of those boats, 25 to be exact, reported having last been in Great Sacandaga Lake, where the first invasion of the spiny waterflea in an inland waterbody in New York, was discovered last fall. The spiny waterflea is a tiny zooplankton that could disrupt our fishery, and it, along with many other potential invaders, are on the stewards' radar for this summer.

The stewards will also be spreading the message about the new DEC firewood regulation, which limits the movement of untreated wood to 50 miles in an effort to protect our forests from insect invaders, such as the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) and Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB), which have devastating impacts on tree populations in the Great Lakes and the Northeast. One of the prime methods for spread of these pests is through the transportation of firewood. EAB has been moving from Michigan to Ohio, Pennsylvania and Quebec. ALB has been found in the New York City area, as well as Worcester, Pennsylvania.

By definition, invasive plant and animal species are non-native, yet are well adapted to the conditions and face no natural controls in the form of predators. When established, invasive species reproduce quickly and outcompete native species for necessary resources, such as food, space, oxygen, and sunlight. Eventually, native species can be completely displaced by the invader. Invasive species also have the potential to cause significant economic impacts and impacts to human health.

Some funding for the program has been provided by the New York State Department of State and by the Lake Champlain Basin Program.

For more info about the Lake Steward program, or ways you can get involved in helping protect Lake George, contact the LGA at 668-3558 or go online to www.lakegeorgeassociation.org.

Source: Lake George Association - P.O. Box 408 - Lake George, NY 12845(518) 668-3558 - Fax (518) 668-4702 - www.lakegeorgeassociation.org

Monday, June 01, 2009

Help Protect Adirondack Waters from Invasive Species

Early detection of invasive species increases chances of successful eradication. Get on-board with the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program's 8th annual aquatic invasive plant training and learn aquatic plant identification tips and survey techniques. Volunteers are asked to conduct an annual survey on an Adirondack lake of their choice to search for aquatic invasive plants. 

To-date, 371 aquatic enthusiasts have spent over 4,000 hours surveying 216 Adirondack waterways. From the Fulton Chain to Lake Champlain, volunteer efforts are making a difference! 

The training is free, but space is limited. Please RSVP by June 8th to Tyler Smith, Aquatic Invasive Species Project Coordinator, at tyler_smith@tnc.org or 518-576-2082 x119. 

Select a training location that best suits you. All sessions are from 10am-2pm. 
• June 16, Darrin Fresh Water Institute, Bolton Landing
• June 18, Goff-Nelson Memorial Library, Tupper Lake
• June 23, Hudson River-Black River Regulating District Field Office, Mayfield 

Returning volunteers are encouraged to attend the plant identification portion as a refresher.