LANSING —The Michigan Department of Natural Resources today awarded more than $4 million in grants to battle harmful, non-native invasive species in the state.
The initiative enlists the expertise of the state departments of Natural Resources, Environmental Quality and Agriculture and Rural Development.
Among the projects, include plans to:
- Map and treat of oak wilt (a serious disease that can kill oak trees) in Alpena, Dickinson and Menominee counties.
- Enhance the regional collaboration of the Clean Boats, Clean Waters campaign to support prevention, outreach and education efforts statewide.
- Better integrate aquatic invasives plan management by evaluating, refining and expanding tools and resources available in Southwest Michigan.
The full list of grant recipients, project descriptions and grant amounts is available on the Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program Web page.
“These grants will fund crucial work in battling invasive species, which pose a significant threat to Michigan’s world-class natural resources,” says DNR Director Keith Creagh. “State agencies can’t undertake this effort alone. Partnerships are vital to keeping our waters, woods and coasts thriving as healthy ecosystems, while at the same time providing the economic and recreational benefits that citizens expect from their outdoor experiences.”
The initiative is made possible through funding first proposed by Gov. Rick Snyder and approved by the Michigan Legislature. Nearly $5 million in ongoing funding to fight invasive species beginning in the 2015 fiscal year (Oct. 1, 2014 through Sept. 30, 2015). A minimum of $3.6 million of the funding is to be devoted to grants, with additional grant funding possible. This year, $4 million of the funding will be put toward grants.
For more information about the Invasive Species Grant Program, visit: michigan.gov/dnr-grants.