Monday, April 26, 2010

EPA Requests Proposals for Urban Watershed Grant

As part of the Urban Waters initiative, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is making available up to $600,000 in a targeted watershed grant for an eligible entity to establish and manage a national-scale, competitive urban watershed small grant program, and provide urban watershed technical services. EPA's Urban Waters initiative will help communities – especially disadvantaged communities – access, restore and benefit from their waters and the surrounding land.

The urban watershed small grant program and the watershed technical services funded under the EPA grant will promote community stewardship by increasing the capacity of local watershed groups and local communities. Better understanding of their urban watersheds will lead to better decision making, and improved restoration and protection efforts in the future. EPA is encouraging local watershed organizations and communities to envision the role their urban watershed should have in their long range development plans.

Questions must be received by May 6, 2010 and proposals must be received by EPA by May 19, 2010. The selection of the successful applicant will be announced this summer.

More information on the Targeted Watershed Grants Program:

Thursday, April 08, 2010

EPA Decentralized Wastewater Management E-Handbook Now Available

The EPA Office of Wastewater Management has recently expanded its "Handbook for Managing Onsite and Clustered (Decentralized) Wastewater Treatment Systems with the addition of an "E-Handbook." The E-Handbook features resource guides containing detailed information on the 13 management program elements featured in the existing management handbook: public education, planning, performance, site evaluation, design, construction/installation, operation/maintenance, inspections/monitoring, residuals management, training/certification, financial assistance, inventory/recordkeeping, and compliance assurance.

The E-Handbook focuses on individual and clustered wastewater systems that discharge to the soil, but the information can also be applied to small systems that discharge to surface waters through federal or state National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit programs. The E-Handbook is intended for health departments, wastewater system management entities, local governments, and others involved in managing multiple individual or clustered treatment systems. Each resource guide contains detailed information on each program element topic and links to other resources, case studies, and examples of successful management programs. The resource guides in the E-Handbook can be accessed via hot-links in the current Management Handbook posted at

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Upcoming Invasive Species Webinars

Cornell University Cooperative Extension ForestConnect Webinar Series April and May, 2010

Anyone who has not previously registered [you only need to register once] can complete the registration via the WEBINARS link at<> Registration is quick and without cost. Registration ensures you receive notice of the specific link to participate, first come first served, in each monthly webinar. Webinars are live at noon and 7PM and typically run 60 minutes plus questions.

More information about the ForestConnect webinar series is available at<> SAF CFE credits will be requested.


April 21, 2010 - "Managing early successional wildlife habitat" will be presented by Kristi Sullivan, Cornell University Department of Natural Resources. Grasslands, shrublands, and young forest habitats (collectively referred to as early-successional habitats) have been declining in New York and throughout the Northeast for decades as have the wildlife species associated with them. Many are listed as species of special concern in several northeastern states. The American woodcock has declined considerably over the past 30 years, and New England cottontails occur in only 20% of the area in which it was historically found. During this webinar, woodland owners, foresters, and natural resource managers learn about tools to manage habitat for the benefit of early successional wildlife including ruffed grouse, songbirds, New England cottontails, and other wildlife.


May 19, 2010 - "Effectively Communicating the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) Message through Media Outreach" will be presented by Dr. Holly Menninger, Cornell University Department of Natural Resources. This webinar is especially relevant to Extension educators, natural resource professionals, and invasive species team leaders. The communication of clear, accurate, and consistent messages about Emerald Ash Borer is a critical component of an effective EAB outreach program. With an emphasis on EAB preparedness and community action, Menninger will provide Webinar participants with tips and tools to more effectively use media outreach to deliver these messages to the public. Topics covered will include: message development, an overview of journalism, strategies for media engagement, and tips for more successful interviews.

Peter J. Smallidge, Ph.D.
NYS Extension Forester
Director, Arnot Teaching and Research Forest
Director, Cornell Maple Program

116 Fernow Hall, Department of Natural Resources
Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853


Thanks to Leslie Surprenant for bringing this to my attention

Leslie Surprenant
Invasive Species Management Coordinator
NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation
Office of Invasive Species Coordination
625 Broadway, 5th Floor
Albany, NY 12233-4756

EPA Climate Reports Available Online

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Office of Water has issued the National Water Program Climate Change Strategy 2009 Progress Report. The report summarizes the climate change accomplishments of the National Water Program through 2009. The report, along with highlights factsheets, is available at:

EPA's Climate Ready Estuaries program recently issued its 2009 Progress Report, describing ongoing efforts to assist coastal communities in preparing for the impacts of climate change. This report features the activities of each of the program's 11 partners and key lessons learned in the adaptation-planning process.

The Progress Report can be downloaded at:

Sunday, April 04, 2010

NALMS 19th Annual Southeastern Lakes Management Conference: May 4 - 7, 2010

NALMS 19th Annual Southeastern Lakes Management Conference:

Managing Extremes: Watersheds and Climate Disruption

May 4 - 7, 2010   Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Hawthorne Inn and Conference Center.  C

onference and hotel registration deadlines are coming up soon.  Please note the changes in dates from previous announcements:

• Early Bird Conference registration deadline:  Sunday, April 4, 2010-         Hotel registration at discounted rate deadline:  Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The conference is focused on the continuing challenges of protecting, managing and maintaining water quality, water supply and aquatic resources under the full range of conditions including the extreme circumstances of weather and climate change. 

(Visit to register for conference).


Tuesday, May 4, 2010 – Full day workshops

• Algae Identification  - Instructors:  JoAnn Burkholder, PhD, NCSU and Linda Ehrlich, PhD, Phycologist

• "Man VS Stats", a survival guide for the statistical wilderness - Instructor: Dennis Helsel, PhD, Practical Stats

Wednesday, May 5, 2010 – ½ day morning workshops

• Life and Death for Lakes: Basic Properties and Processes, Dr. John Hains, Clemson

• Local Stream Restoration Tour, Darrell Westmoreland, North State Environmental


The Conference opening plenary session is at 1:30 PM on Wednesday, May 5 with a talk by Linda Rimer, US EPA on Climate Change.  Jason Ortegren will give a talk entitled

Perspectives on Drought in the Southeastern U.S.: Past, Present...and Future? as the highlighted speaker for the luncheon on Thursday, May 6.

Concurrent sessions from Wednesday afternoon through Friday noon will cover a multitude of subjects that reflect the broad range of issues affecting lakes and watersheds in the Southeast.  Topics in the sessions include – Drought and Flood management, Water Conservation, Water Quality, Storm Water Management, Stream and Watershed Restoration, Water Supply Issues, Climate Change Initiatives, Invasive Species and other important topics.

LOCATION: The Hawthorne Inn and Conference Center is conveniently located in central North Carolina.  Owned and operated by Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, the Inn is conveniently located in downtown Winston-Salem – at the doorstep of Old Salem.The conference rate is $77 for single, double, double /double or King plus taxes.  Complimentary breakfast is included with room. Reservations can be made by calling

800 972-3774 and ask for the NC Lake Management Conference block or online @ code 26D4ES.

The reserved block of rooms at the conference rate will only be available until Friday, April 13, 2010- so reserve early at the discounted rate!

REGISTRATION:  $175 (after April 4: $200); includes morning coffee, two lunches, breaks, as well as a special reception on Wednesday night at the Hawthorne Inn.  There are additional registration fees for the Pre-Conference Workshops on May 4-5 (includes breaks and lunch for full day workshops).  Workshop and conference registration information and forms can be found on the NCLMS website at

For exhibitor registration information, contact Cary Martin at

Friday, April 02, 2010


Draft Report Recommends New Classification System to Restrict Movement of Non-Native Plants and Animals

For the first time, New York would classify non-native plants and animals to help prevent the spread of invasive species through waterways, forests and farmlands, under a proposal unveiled today by the state Invasive Species Council.

The Council released a draft report, "A Regulatory System for Non-Native Species," that calls for a multi-pronged approach to tackling one of the state's fastest growing environmental threats. Among other recommendations, the Council proposed a new assessment system for invasive species – such as zebra mussels, Sirex wood wasps and Eurasion milfoil – that would allow the state to categorize them as "prohibited," "regulated" or "unregulated." Such a classification system would help restrict movement of potentially harmful plants and animals.

The Council, created by state statute, comprises nine state agencies and is co-led by the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and the Department of Agriculture and Markets (DAM). The Council released the draft report for public comment through May 14 (details below). Following finalization, the report will be sent to Governor David A. Paterson and the state Legislature for possible action.

"Invasive species have a devastating impact, not only on the environment but also the economy," DEC Commissioner Pete Grannis said. "They have wiped out certain tree species, hurt recreational and commercial fishing, and tainted water supplies. The best way to prevent their spread is to focus on the many pathways by which plants and animals are moved around the globe. The system the Council is proposing strikes the right balance of minimizing the major threats to our ecology and economy while allowing for the careful use of plants and animals that pose lower risks."

The Public Review Draft of the "invasive species list report" - A Regulatory System for Non-native Species - has been released for public comment. Comments will be received through 14 May 2010.

You can find the Report at

EPA Holds Additional Public Hearings on Proposed Florida Water Quality Standards

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is holding several public hearings in April, in addition to the public hearings that were held in February, to receive more input on the agency's proposed Florida water quality standards. The standards will protect people's health, aquatic life and the long-term recreational uses of Florida's waters, which are a critical part of the state's economy.

The additional hearings are scheduled for:

April 13, 2010: Fort Myers
Harborside Event Center
1375 Monroe Street, Fort Myers, Fla. 33901
12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

April 14, 2010: Tampa
Hilton Tampa Airport
2225 North Lois Avenue, Tampa, Fla. 33607
12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

April 15, 2010: Jacksonville
Clarion Hotel Airport Conference Center
2101 Dixie Clipper Drive, Jacksonville, Fla. 32218
1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

EPA is accepting public comments on the proposed standards through April 28

More on the proposed rule and public hearings: