Save the Sound receives Water Quality and Green Infrastructure grants

Save the Sound has received three grants to monitor and prevent water pollution around the western Long Island Sound region. Grants from the Long Island Sound Futures Fund will make possible green infrastructure in Fairfield County and water quality program development in Westchester and Nassau counties, and a grant from the Westchester Community Foundation will support water quality monitoring.

“The western Sound faces special water pollution challenges: dense population, deteriorating pipes, and water flow patterns that mean pollution can stick around for a long time,” said Tracy Brown, director of Save the Sound’s Western Long Island Sound programs. “Support from the Westchester Community Foundation will let us continue tracking down sewage leaks in Westchester County’s streams, rivers, and harbors. And thanks to the Long Island Sound Futures Fund, we’ll be able to pilot common standards for citizen scientists doing similar work on Sound bays and harbors across the New York and Connecticut shores.”

The Long Island Sound Futures Fund (LISFF) pools funds from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The LISFF has granted Save the Sound $58,937 to operate the pilot program at Mamaroneck Harbor and Manhasset Bay, New York — one of 25 grants announced Monday with federal, Connecticut, and New York environmental officials. The Westchester Community Foundation will continue its strong support of Save the Sound’s water quality monitoring program with a grant of $15,000, the foundation announced late last week.

A second major grant from the LISFF provides $149,833 for Phase II of a green infrastructure project at Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport.

“This project will capture and filter nearly one million gallons of urban stormwater each year,” said Save the Sound Green Infrastructure Program Manager Kendall Barbery. “Thanks to the Long Island Sound Futures Fund, the Pequonnock River and Long Island Sound will be cleaner. We’re looking forward to providing zoo visitors with beautiful landscaping and giving local teens and landscape practitioners the opportunity to learn new planting and green infrastructure construction skills.”

Save the Sound and the zoo have been partnering since April on permeable pavement and rain gardens that filter rain flowing across the zoo’s parking lot and walkways. This grant will support installation of 2,000 square feet of bioretention gardens and tree pits in lawn areas, and replacement of up to 4,000 square feet of impervious pavement with pervious pavers that allow water to soak into the ground.

Save the Sound is a bi-state program of Connecticut Fund for the Environment with an established 40-year track record of restoring and protecting the waters and shorelines of the Sound. From its offices in New Haven and Mamaroneck, Save the Sound works for a cleaner, healthier, and more vibrant Long Island Sound where humans and marine life can prosper year-round. Our success is based on scientific knowledge, legal expertise, and thousands of ordinary people teaming up achieve results that benefit our environment for current and future generations.