Carper, Coons Legislation Secures $4.3 Million For Conservation and Restoration Efforts In Delaware River Watershed

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senators Tom Carper, top Democrat on the Environment and Public Works Committee, and Senator Chris Coons (both D-Del.), applauded the launch of the Delaware Water Conservation Fund (DCWF), a competitive grant program of $4.3 million that will help support the protection and restoration of wildlife habitats in the Delaware River Watershed. This new grant program is a direct result of the Delaware River Basin Conservation Act – a bill Senators Carper and Coons introduced and were instrumental in passing in the Senate, along with then-Congressman John Carney (D-Del.). 

“This grant program is a big win for our state’s economy and environment,” said Senator Carper. “In Delaware, we understand the importance of preserving the Delaware River Basin, which is an economic engine for our entire region. This vital watershed provides 15 million Americans with clean drinking water, contributes $25 billion to our region’s economy and fuels our local communities by supporting jobs in the maritime, agriculture, tourism, hunting, fishing and wildlife industries. I’m proud the Delaware River Basin Conservation Act is supporting important efforts to keep this critical resource vibrant for years to come. Together, we will continue to ensure that the basin is healthy for future generations so they too can enjoy its economic and environmental benefits.”

“The Delaware River Basin is an ecological powerhouse that provides clean drinking water and recreational opportunities to Delawareans as well as habitat for a diverse array of wildlife,” Senator Coons said. “The basin is also an economic engine for the region, supporting jobs in the tourism, fishing, and maritime industries, all which create revenue in the broader regional economy. The Delaware River Conservation Fund ensures we take a comprehensive, long-term approach to managing and preserving the Delaware River Basin’s vibrant ecosystem for future generations.”

The Delaware Water Conservation Fund has been launched by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF). According to FWS and NFWF, projects funded by the DWCF will take place in habitats across the Delaware River Watershed — from the beaches and marshes of the Delaware Bay to the farms, cities and towns of Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, to rivers and streams of New York. The DWCF will expand and support efforts to:

  • Restore and conserve fish and wildlife habitat in the basin
  • Improve and maintain Delaware River’s water quality
  • Manage water volume and improve flood damage mitigation in the basin
  • Expand recreational opportunities in the region’s water system

The request for grant proposals through NFWF is now open and applications are due on September 27, 2018. For more information on the competitive grant program and selection, visit NFWF’s website.