The Alliance of Rouge Communities will receive more than $250,000 from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to continue work on cleaning up the Rouge River in Dearborn, U.S. Sens. Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow announced today.
The funding for the clean-up effort is part of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, a multi-agency program launched by President Obama in 2009 that strategically targets the most significant problems in the Great Lakes ecosystem.
"Restoring the Great Lakes and the waters flowing into them is of immense importance to the health and prosperity of millions in Michigan and beyond," Levin said. "We've already made great progress in restoring the Rouge River, and this grant will ensure that vital work can continue."
Stabenow said, "This important project will help clean up the Rouge River and improve habitat for fish and wildlife. It will also help maintain the river for local communities and the tourists and anglers who visit the river every year, and protect our natural resources and economy."
The Alliance of Rouge Communities, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization comprised of three counties, 35 municipal governments, Henry Ford Community College, University of Michigan-Dearborn, and five cooperating partners, has worked for over seven years on the cleanup of the Rouge River watershed in southeast Michigan. ARC will use the $256,272 grant for the Rouge Oxbow Restoration Project -- Phase III Design.
The project is the final phase of efforts to improve fish and wildlife habitat in the restoration of the oxbow at the Henry Ford. The design will hydraulically reconnect the oxbow to the Rouge River by removing the existing berm and a portion of the existing concrete channel. The reconnection will foster continued habitat restoration, enhance warm water fisheries, and increase aquatic and wildlife populations.