Housatonic Valley Association gets grant for river project fund
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
WEST CORNWALL >> The Housatonic Valley Association recently received a $10,000 grant from the Housatonic River Project Fund established by FirstLight Power Resources that will help support developing a Still River Watershed Management Plan.
The project was begun with a $20,000 grant from the Fairfield County Community Foundation, a $103,868 grant from the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Section 319 Nonpoint Source Grant Program Fund and a $5,000 RBC Foundation Blue Water Community Action grant. The comprehensive plan, developed by HVA and the Still River communities, will address water quality and other Still River issues in the Danbury, Conn. area.
According to HVA’s Water Protection Director Michael Jastremski, the grants will help develop a website and social media campaign to enhance public support and engage stakeholders during the planning process of the watershed management plan. It will also help educate riverside residents and recreationalists and bring the planning process into watershed communities.
FirstLight, which generates power on the Housatonic River from Massachusetts to Monroe, established the Housatonic River Project Fund to support water quality and life safety and promote environmental awareness. The watershed management plan meets these requirements. It will recommend projects to reduce nonpoint source pollution into the Still River and its tributaries and determine how to deal with water quality impairments that expose people to health risks as well as promote environmental awareness throughout the area.
The Still River communities include Bethel, Brookfield, Danbury, Newtown, New Fairfield, New Milford, Redding and Ridgefield in Litchfield and Fairfield counties. The major tributaries are East Swamp Brook, Limekiln Brook, Miry Brook, Padanaram Brook, and Sympaug Brook. The Still River joins the Housatonic in New Milford, which flows through lakes Lillinonah and Zoar and into Long Island Sound.
FirstLight Power Resources, a subsidiary of GDF SUEZ Energy North America, operates a portfolio of power generation plants in Connecticut and Massachusetts. For more Information on FirstLight and The Housatonic River Project visit gdfsuezna.com/firstlight-power-resources.
Founded in 1941, HVA is uniquely dedicated to protecting the entire Housatonic River Watershed. The watershed includes about 2,000 square miles of land stretching from western Massachusetts through western Connecticut and eastern New York to Long Island Sound. HVA monitors water quality throughout the watershed, conducts educational programs, works to link preserved space with the Housatonic River Greenway of hiking and biking trails and uses computer mapping to help towns measure the impact and benefits of land use and development. It also sponsors the Litchfield Hills Greenprint Collaborative in protecting more land across northwest Connecticut. HVA’s offices are in Cornwall Bridge, Connecticut; South Lee, Massachusetts and Wassaic, New York. More info is available at www.hvatoday.org.