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Vermont Organizations Get $30,000 for Environmental Education Projects

Release Date: 09/22/2005
Contact Information:

Contact: David Deegan (, EPA Office of Public Affairs, (617) 918-1017

For Immediate Release: September 22, 2005; Release # dd050914

Three projects in Vermont were awarded $10,000 each in environmental education grants, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today. The organizations are among 13 recipients throughout New England that were awarded a total of $190,000.

Selected from more than 75 applicants in New England, the Strafford Historical Society, Vermont Association of Conservation Districts and the Vermont Institute of Natural Science were given grants by the EPA’s New England office.

The grants are targeted to organizations that tackle issues such as community and curriculum development and environmental health.

"Environmental education teaches us how to create a cleaner environment for our future,” said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator of EPA's New England Office. “These grants support environmental education projects that address such challenges as water ecology, preservation and environmental justice issues."

The Strafford Historical Society, Inc., in Strafford will use the funds to produce and distribute three documentaries on Vermont’s copper mining industry and related land-use and environmental issues. The project will include a 1-hour documentary for the public and two 20-minute educational documentaries for youth. Strafford Historical Society intends to show the movie at least 30 times in Vermont and New Hampshire and local schools plan to use the films in environmental science classes.

The Vermont Association of Conservation Districts, which hosts the Vermont Envirothon. will use the money for its program that lets students participate in a conference that focuses on natural resources problem-solving. At the conference, students learn about aquatics, forestry, soils, wildlife, and a fifth topic which changes annually. This year the fifth topic is: “Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate.” Activities include curriculum from in-class and hands-on field experiences. More than 500 students from over 20 area schools have participated in the event.

The Vermont Institute of Natural Science in Woodstock received funds to expand a curriculum developed some 30 years ago. The Environmental Learning for the Future curriculum brings students in kindergarten through sixth grade outside to explore nature in school yards and neighborhoods. Specially trained parents and volunteers teach the program. This year’s funds will support a three-year project that will expand the curriculum by developing supplemental activities and materials for urban and suburban elementary students. Schools in Lebanon, NH and Rutland,Ver. are participating in the expanded program. When the project is finished, 675 students, 65 adult volunteers and 30 classroom teachers will have worked with the institute on updating the curriculum for urban/suburban students.

For more information on the agency's education programs, visit the agency's web site at

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Related Information:
Environmental Education Grants