Updates from ASLA


Historic Investments in Landscape Architecture Water Projects

ASLA 2023 Professional Research Honor Award. The Cobble Bell, Port Bay, New York. Proof Projects LLC / Healthy Port Futures/Proof Projects LLC

The Biden-Harris administration recently announced historic funding related to our nation’s waters as part of its Investing in America Agenda. This initiative provides numerous opportunities for landscape architects to transform our nation’s infrastructure while addressing the climate and biodiversity crisis. Specifically, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the following:

$35 million for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative

  • Funds environmental protection and restoration projects that safeguard the Great Lakes and underserved communities in the region.
  • Part of EPA’s newly created Great Lakes Environmental Justice Grant Program under the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI).
  • Established in 2010, GLRI accelerates efforts to protect and restore the largest system of fresh surface water in the world—the Great Lakes.
  •  Long-term goals of the initiative include addressing:
    • Toxic substances and areas of concern
    • Invasive species; nonpoint source pollution impacts on nearshore health
      Habitats and species
    • Foundations for future restoration actions

$206 million for the Chesapeake Bay

  • Funds local projects and technical assistance to protect and restore the Chesapeake Bay’s ecosystem and economic opportunities and advance environmental justice in the region.
  • This funding marks the most significant single contribution to the Chesapeake Bay Program.
  • Projects these investments will fund include installing stormwater infrastructure practices to intercept stormwater runoff, building capacity for community-led urban tree canopy planting projects, and collecting native seed stocks for nurseries.
  • The Chesapeake Bay is the largest estuary in the United States and in North America, covering 64,000 square miles and including more than 150 rivers and streams that drain into the Bay.

ASLA sent recommendations for the President’s Fiscal Year 2025 Budget urging $1.1 billion for restoration efforts in the Chesapeake Bay to improve water quality and the overall health of the bay, as well as $500 million for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to clean up legacy pollution, restore habitats, combat invasive species, and address shoreline erosion across the basin.

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