CLEVELAND – Today, Congressman Dave Joyce (OH-14) joined Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler in touring the Lake Guardian, the largest research vessel in the U.S. EPA fleet and the largest research vessel currently operating on the Great Lakes. After the tour, Dave and Administrator Wheeler spoke with the crew and announced a new Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) grant program specifically focused on funding trash-free water projects.
“The research conducted on this ship drives the science we need to further our efforts to protect the Great Lakes,” said Dave. “The Great Lakes aren’t just an invaluable natural resource or an economic powerhouse. They’re a national treasure and the Trash-Free Great Lakes Grant Program will help us preserve them for future generations. It was truly an honor to join Administrator Wheeler in meeting the Lake Guardiancrew today and applaud his announcement of GLRI’s newest grant program.”
“Removing trash, litter and garbage – including plastics – from marine and freshwater environments is one of EPA’s highest priorities,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “The Trash-Free Great Lakes Grant Program is intended to fund efforts by communities and other applicants to clean up beaches and waterways so that the Great Lakes watershed will continue to provide habitat for wildlife and drinking water and recreation for tens of millions of people.”
Dave has long championed efforts to protect the Great Lakes, which provide more than 1.5 million jobs, supply 90% of our nation’s fresh water, support over 3,500 species of plants and animals, and generate $62 billion in wages every year. As the Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, Dave has fought to keep the GLRI fully funded.
Eligible entities for GLRI’s newest grant program will include state agencies, federally recognized tribes and tribal consortia, any agency or instrumentality of local governments, nonprofit organizations, interstate agencies, and colleges and universities. Possible types of eligible projects include:
· Great Lakes beach and shoreline cleanup projects.
· Great Lakes harbor and river cleanup projects.
· Great Lakes trash and litter prevention and education projects.
To learn more about today’s announcement, click here.