Contact: Enesta Jones – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency – June 14, 2016

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment) are providing for the first time $1.4 million in grants for nine projects to improve land management of hundreds of thousands of acres of watersheds in seven states. Grants were awarded to organizations in California, Colorado, Florida, Maine, Oregon, Washington, and West Virginia to provide short-term funding to leverage larger financing for targeted watershed protection; to provide funds that help build the capacity of local organizations for sustainable, long-term watershed protection; or to support new techniques or approaches that advance the state of practice for watershed protection and that can be replicated across the country. For full news release, click here.

Newsroom America – June 16, 2016

This week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded the Navajo Nation Environmental Protection Agency $465,000 for water quality monitoring in the San Juan River. This funding is in addition to $1 million awarded in October for water quality monitoring and ecological restoration activities throughout the Reservation. For full story, click here.

By Sam Hananel, Associated Press – U.S. News –May 31, 2016

The Supreme Court is making it easier for landowners to bring a court challenge when federal regulators try to restrict property development due to concerns about water pollution. The justices ruled unanimously Tuesday that a Minnesota company could file a lawsuit against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers over the agency's determination that its land is off limits to peat mining under the Clean Water Act. For full story, click here.

By Laura Lightbody The Pew Charitable Trusts June 1, 2016

On June 1, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recommended a new general permit for natural shoreline defenses—Proposed Nationwide Permit B. Living Shorelines—which use natural materials such as plants, sand, and rocks to reduce erosion. Fourteen percent of the U.S. coastline is armored with hard infrastructure, such as bulkheads and seawalls, which often leads to erosion and loss of wetlands and habitat, but the Corps’ current permit program does not include most living shoreline activities. As a result, those projects face a rigorous and lengthy review. For full story, click here.

By Eric Chaney – The Weather Channel – June 1, 2016

Our waterways are filled with traces of drugs, says a new study conducted by the USGS. A team of researchers, led by hydrologist Paul Bradley, recently collected water samples from 59 small streams in the Southeast from Virginia to Georgia, which were analyzed for 108 pharmaceuticals and degradates. All 59 streams tested positive for at least one of compounds and the overall average was six different compounds per stream. “Pharmaceutical contaminants are growing aquatic-health concerns and largely attributed to wastewater treatment facility discharges,” the study says. But only 17 of the 59 streams have any reported wastewater discharges. For full story, click here.