HARRISBURG, Pa. (Feb. 16) – The Coldwater Heritage Partnership (CHP) is pleased to announce that over $72,000 in grants have been awarded to local organizations to protect and conserve Pennsylvania’s coldwater streams. The partnership is a collaborative effort between the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Foundation for Pennsylvania Watersheds, PA Fish and Boat Commission and PA Council of Trout Unlimited.
The purpose of the CHP is to provide leadership, coordination, technical assistance, and funding support for the conservation and protection of Pennsylvania’s coldwater streams. The program awards planning and implementation grants to conservation organizations in an effort to protect and conserve Pennsylvania’s coldwater resources.
The planning grant is awarded to organizations to create a coldwater conservation plan that evaluates the biological, physical, and chemical features of the stream or watershed to identify potential threats, impacts, and opportunities and compile recommendations for future protection.
The implementation grant is awarded to organizations to complete projects listed as recommendations in Coldwater Conservation Plans or similar documents. Potential projects must conserve, protect, or enhance the resources.
Grants have been awarded to the following organizations:
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, Jefferson County
· $5,000 to complete an assessment of the water and habitat quality on the tributaries to the Clarion River that flow through Clear Creek State Park and State Forest to identify areas of concern and improvement.
Endless Mountains RC&D on behalf of Pine Creek Watershed Council, Tioga, Potter, and Lycoming Counties
· $5,000 to assess the headwater tributaries of the Pine Creek watershed for thermal refuge of naturally reproducing trout populations and those under threat from climate and woolly adelgid impacts.
Eastern PA Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation (EPCAMR), Luzerne County
· $4,170 to evaluate the fishery habitat and watershed restoration needs of the Abrahams Creek and develop a coldwater conservation plan that will outline recommendations for future watershed implementation and restoration projects.
Scrubgrass Creek Watershed Association, Venango County
· $5,000 to create a detailed conservation plan to identify any potential impacts and to preserve Bullion Run as a coldwater fishery with natural reproduction of wild trout.
Allegheny Mountain Chapter of Trout Unlimited, Clearfield County
· $1,944 to plant a riparian buffer and reforest a long-abandoned splash dam in Clearfield County.
Trout Unlimited, Clinton County
· $7,000 to improve habitat for the existing Class A population of Brook trout and reduce an estimated 820 lbs./year of sediment by addressing 1,100 feet of streambank restoration along Beaverdam Run.
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, Elk County
· $7,000 to stabilize the eroding bank and trail and improve the diversity and quality of instream habitat for trout and other native species along East Branch Spring Creek.
Lackawanna County Conservation District, Lackawanna County
· $7,000 to provide additional trout habitat structures while improving water quality by stabilizing portions of the stream bank along Leggetts Creek.
Lehigh County Conservation District, Lehigh County
· $6,775 to remove invasive plant species from the streambanks of a tributary to the Little Lehigh Creek in Emmaus and replace them with a riparian buffer consisting of native trees and shrubs.
Wildlands Conservancy, Lehigh County
· $6,800 to restore approximately 250 feet of Little Lehigh Creek where severe bank erosion has led to increased sedimentation, loss of a mature riparian buffer and negative impacts to fish habitat.
Upper Allegheny Watershed Association, Potter County
· $2,750 to begin eradication efforts of invasive plants (Japanese knotweed) in the Mill Creek Basin.
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, Warren County
· $7,000 to improve coldwater habitat connectivity between the Allegheny River and Exceptional Value headwaters of the Browns Run River watershed by improving habitat diversity and water quality along 2,400 feet of Browns Run near its mouth.
Tubmill Trout Club Unlimited, Westmoreland County
· $7,000 to create and improve instream habitat along 1,000 feet of Hendricks Creek.
Additional information about the grant opportunity as well as plans, reports, and photographs from previous grant awardees can be found on the CHP website www.coldwaterheritage.org.