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EPA awards Great Lakes restoration funding for Macomb/Oakland projects

By: Julie Snyder | Mount Clemens - Clinton - Harrison Journal | Published November 18, 2015


HARRISON TOWNSHIP — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Nov. 9 announced that it is providing $20 million in new funding for major Great Lakes Restoration Initiative projects in the Clinton River Area of Concern (AOC).

Senior Advisor to the EPA Administrator Cameron Davis was joined by U.S. Rep. Sander Levin, D-Royal Oak; U.S. Rep. Candice Miller, R-Harrison Township; and representatives of the grantees outside Harbor Club South Apartments near the Clinton River spillway, which connects the two congressional districts.

“Once completed, the projects we’re announcing today will move the Clinton River AOC toward a more vibrant environment and local economy,” Davis said. “With such strong bipartisan support in Congress, the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is producing results in Michigan and across the Great Lakes.”

“This is an important development for everyone who cares about the Clinton River,” said Levin. “With these federal grants, we are taking a giant step forward toward the restoration of the Clinton River and the eventual removal of this waterway from the list of Great Lakes Areas of Concern. We need to build on this work, not just in the Clinton River, but throughout the Great Lakes, by continuing the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, which is making this progress possible.”

The following projects and grants will be funded:

Clinton River corridor project — city of Sterling Heights ($4.5 million), will improve habitat diversity along a 9-mile section of the Clinton River and will create riffle-pools, manage woody debris, stabilize stream banks, develop the channel, control invasive species and enhance native species.

Partridge Creek Commons, McBride Drain and Clinton River spillway projects — Macomb County ($6.3 million), will restore more than 32,000 linear feet and almost 90 acres of in-stream, streamside and upland habitat. The projects will control invasive species, plant native vegetation, stabilize and naturalize shoreline, increase habitat diversity through restoration of riffle and pool complexes, and improve habitat connectivity.

Clinton River spillway project — Macomb County ($2.5 million), will restore the eastern end of the spillway near Lake St. Clair in partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The project includes invasive species removal and other restoration efforts.

Wolcott Mill Metropark wetland project — Huron-Clinton Metropolitan Authority ($335,374), will restore sections of the north branch of the Clinton River floodplain to native grasslands and forested wetlands as part of a long-term strategy to address stormwater impacts to the watershed. This project will help restore native wildlife species such as pollinators and grassland birds.

Galloway wetland project — city of Auburn Hills ($140,000), will restore wetlands adjacent to Galloway Creek in the city of Auburn Hills by removing significant debris previously dumped in this area allowing for the natural establishment of native wetlands. This project will also re-establish flow from Galloway Creek, a key tributary to the Clinton River watershed, recreating the historic ecological function and reducing stormwater to improve water quality.

Sylvan Glen project — city of Troy ($375,000), will restore 3,500 feet of stream, reduce sediment from reaching the Clinton River and improve habitat for aquatic life.

Harley-Ensign/Clinton River mouth project — U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Interagency Agreement ($2,694,201), will improve fish and wildlife habitat and restore former coastal wetland habitat where the Clinton River meets Lake St. Clair. This project will control invasive species, establish 14 acres of fish habitat, and restore 4 acres of upland habitat as well as 6,000 feet of shoreline.

Shelby Township stream bank stabilization project — U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Interagency Agreement ($914,412), will restore the aquatic and terrestrial habitat on the main stem of the Clinton River by reducing stream bank erosion and re-establishing nearshore habitat.

The Galloway Creek fish passage project — U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Interagency Agreement ($2,202,000), will restore approximately 3,000 linear feet of channel and 2 acres of riparian habitat in Galloway Creek, which will improve floodplain and in-stream connectivity, increase shoreline stability, provide in-channel aquatic habitat, increase habitat diversity and increase shade for riparian wetlands.