EPA funds Klamath Restoration


The Yurok Tribe got $1.3 million from the Environmental Protection Agency this week to continue its work on wetland restoration and pollution control on a long stretch of the Klamath River.

From the EPA:

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announces it has awarded a $1.3 million grant under its Performance Partnership Grant Program to the Yurok Tribe in Klamath, Calif. to support the tribe’s efforts to control water pollution, enhance the tribe’s wetlands preservation and restoration program, and provide community outreach and staff environmental training. The grant will support tribal environmental protection activities for two years.

“The Yurok Tribe is working to preserve and improve ecosystems along 45 miles of the Klamath River, including approximately 5800 acres of wetlands,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “The Yurok’s efforts are a great example of how states and tribes can take advantage of EPA resources to further the scope of their environmental programs.”

Under this grant, the Yurok Tribe will:

· enhance water quality monitoring and analysis of tribal waters;
· implement a new management plan addressing sources of water pollution, such as land runoff;
· support intertribal watershed coordination activities with the Klamath Basin Tribal Water Quality Workgroup;
· further development of the Tribe's wetlands program plan, including assessing climate change impacts to reservation wetlands;
· close nine dumpsites and implement new tools to better manage solid waste; and
· conduct community outreach and education, staff training and general administration and evaluation of the tribe’s environmental program.

EPA’s Performance Partnership Grant Program allows for states and tribes to combine multiple environmental program grants into a single grant. Yurok’s grant includes funds from four EPA grant programs.

The Yurok Tribe is the largest tribe in California, with more than 5,000 members and more than 200 employees. The tribe’s major initiatives include: the Hoopa-Yurok Settlement Act, dam removal, natural resources protection, sustainable economic development enterprises and land acquisition. The Yurok Tribe chairman is Thomas P. O'Rourke Sr.

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