Environmental Enhancement Grants Awarded to North Carolina Projects
Image: Pixabay

Environmental Enhancement Grants Awarded to North Carolina Projects

About $2 million in grants were awarded during the 2015 cycle

August 2, 2016

North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper has announced that $2 million in grants are being routed to projects intended to conserve waterways, protect wildlife, improve water quality, and develop new conservation and environmental management efforts across the state.

In an agreement signed in 2000, Smithfield Foods, the world's largest pork producer, agreed to provide $50 million to improve North Carolina's environment. An additional $15 million was provided to North Carolina State University to fund the development of new technologies for processing and treatment of hog waste. The North Carolina Attorney General's Office is charged with choosing the recipients.

"Natural wonders from the mountains to the coast are part of North Carolina's legacy," Cooper said in a written statement. "These grants will help preserve our state's environment for generations to come."

The following groups are the recipients of the 2015 Environmental Enhancement Grants:

  • The Town of Wake Forest will receive $193,650 to improve water quality and aquatic habitat in the Neuse River Basin by removing a failing earthen dam, stabilizing the stream bank and restoring natural vegetation on Smith Creek.
  • NC Coastal Federation was awarded $195,361 to purchase a 24.8-acre section of the 141-acre Schneider Farm on the White Oak River in Swansboro. This acquisition is a component of the Onslow Bight Conservation Forum, a broad partnership that promotes conservation of natural corridors and enhancement of biological diversity throughout the Onslow Bight Landscape.
  • Piedmont Conservation Council will receive $270,000 to help acquire a portion of the former Boling Chair Company property along a tributary of Loves Creek in downtown Siler City. The Council will restore the natural floodplain on the property, improving water quality in the Loves Creek watershed.
  • East Carolina University was awarded $110,209.00 to develop and implement comprehensive stream stabilization, water quality monitoring, and outreach plan to augment the restoration of Town Creek, an urban stream in downtown Greenville, NC.
  • North Carolina State University will receive $37,000 to evaluate best practices for managing stormwater on agricultural fields. NCSU will use resulting data to develop a fact sheet on environmental management for farmers to reduce pollution near Millstone Creek and the Cape Fear River.
  • Carolina Land and Lakes Resource Conservation & Development was awarded $32,000 to improve stormwater wetlands at the Rocky Face Mountain Recreational Area in Alexander County. The project will result in the removal of sediment, nutrients, metals and petroleum products before the stormwater runoff reaches the Rocky Face Branch watershed.
  • The Nature Conservancy will receive $150,000 to purchase and protect 300 acres of land and old-growth cypress swamp forest along the Black River in Bladen County. This project will protect the river, its water quality, swamp forests and aquatic wildlife habitats by preventing development along the river.
  • NC Coastal Land Trust was awarded $425,000 to support the purchase of 3,000 acres along the Waccamaw River. The acquisition will preserve significant diverse wetland habitats, enhance local water quality, and protect and buffer special natural areas in the Lumber River Basin.
  • Tar River Land Conservancy will receive $338,000 to purchase the 260-acre Possumquarter track on Fishing and Possumquarter Creeks. The purchase will preserve 4.8 miles of streams and 151 acres of forested uplands while protecting nationally significant aquatic habitats and drinking water for local communities.
  • Ducks Unlimited, Inc. was awarded $250,000 to restore the wetland function to improve water quality in the Pasquotank and Tar-Pamlico River Basins. The project includes replacing water control structures, removing debris from existing canals, enhancing embankments and installing pump systems to ensure proper water management and wetland functions. These enhancements will improve habitat for waterfowl, shorebirds and neo-tropical migratory species.

The North Carolina Attorney General's Office will begin accepting applications for the next cycle of Environmental Enhancement Grants this fall.