2021 Grant Announcement & Showcase

Press Event & Project Tour on Sept. 17, 2021 in Philadelphia

The Schuylkill River Greenways, Schuylkill Action Network, Exelon Generation, Delaware River Basin Commission, Philadelphia Water Department, Aqua Pennsylvania, the Environmental Protection Agency and the PA Department of Environmental Protection will hold a showcase on Sept. 17, 2021, in Philadelphia to announce the recipients of this year’s Schuylkill River Restoration Fund.

Guests of the showcase will take a tour of agricultural projects at Northwestern Stables including runoff and paddock improvements. After the tour, the 2021 restoration fund grantees will be officially announced. People must register to attend the free project tour, which includes lunch. The event is limited to 50 registrants.

Click Here to Register!
SRG will distribute $330,000 to water quality improvement projects throughout Schuylkill River region

The devastating impacts of Hurricane Ida showed the need for restoration projects along local waterways. Towns, homes and businesses near rivers, creeks and streams experienced extreme flooding.

The Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area continues to address this need with the distribution of $337,500 in grants this year to seven projects helping to improve the region’s water conditions and natural environment.

Since it was established in 2006, the Schuylkill River Restoration Fund has supported 121 environmental projects with an investment of $4.6 million.

“The mission of the fund is to restore natural spaces in order to improve the ecosystem,” said Schuylkill River Greenways Education Director Sarah Crothers. “One of the main causes of major flooding, other than increased amounts of precipitation, is the lack of natural absorbent surfaces.”

Crothers explained man-made surfaces such as concrete don’t soak up water. Natural buffers and landscaping like native trees, shrubs and grasses act as a sponge when it rains.

The seven projects being awarded this year are in Schuylkill, Berks, Montgomery, Chester and Philadelphia Counties. The projects will improve water conditions through activities such as streambank fencing, mine drainage, and native plant installations to improve areas prone to flooding.

“The Schuylkill River Restoration fund is made possible by all of our generous partners who recognize the importance of the awarded projects. Once implemented, projects have an immediate positive impact on the watershed,” said Schuylkill River Greenways NHA Deputy Director Tim Fenchel.

Exelon has provided more than $3.1 million to the Schuylkill River Restoration Fund since it was founded; the Philadelphia Water Department has contributed $1.2 million over the past twelve years; Aqua PA has donated more than $225,000; and MOM’s Organic Market has donated approximately $10,000.

More About the Restoration Fund

The Schuylkill River Restoration Fund provides grants to government agencies and non-profit organizations for projects that improve the quality of water in the watershed. The grants focus on three major sources of pollution: stormwater run-off, agricultural pollution and abandoned mine drainage.

The  annual grant program begins each year in January with funding typically being awarded in May or June.  The goal of the Restoration Fund is to support projects in the Schuylkill River watershed that are consistent with restoration and water management goals for the entire basin. Any questions about the Schuylkill River Restoration Fund or the grant submission process should be directed to Tim Fenchel at tfenchel@schuylkillriver.org

The fund was created in 2006 through a unique public/private partnership between Exelon Nuclear, the Delaware River Basin Commission and the Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area. Since being established in 2006, the fund has distributed more than $4.6 million–and leveraged another $5 million–for 121 projects that protect and restore the Schuylkill River.

The Schuylkill River Restoration Fund is funded through public/private partnerships and relies on donations from numerous organizations and individuals. Click here to donate to the fund.

As a significant provider of clean energy in our area, we at Limerick Generating Station are committed to the betterment of our community and surrounding environment. We are proud to partner with Schuylkill River Greenways as we all strive towards strengthening the natural beauty and health of our local ecosystem.

- Frank Surniolo, Limerick Generating Station Site Vice President
Donate to the Restoration Fund
2022 Restoration Fund Grant Timeline

The 2022 Restoration Fund Grant Timeline will be announced in January. 

Letter of Intent Process

Organizations must submit a Letter of Intent through the Fund’s online grant portal by the stated deadline. If you have trouble accessing the portal, please contact Tim Fenchel at tfenchel@schuylkillriver.org

The Letter of Intent must include the following:

  • Project Name and location
  • Project Manager and contact information
  • Brief summary of the project addressing why it is important and what the impact
    will be on the watershed.
  • Objectives of the project and how it meets the program guidelines and criteria
  • Letter should clearly communicate where the project stands in regards to design. Is the project design fully completed, in progress, or just in draft planning stage.
  • Estimated grant request and matching fund sources

More details about the Letter of Intent will be announced in January 2022. 

2020 Grant Announcement & Project Showcase

In 2020, a total of $307,695 was awarded to nine projects in four Pennsylvania counties that will improve water quality in the Schuylkill River, a source of drinking water for almost 2 million people. The Schuylkill River Restoration Fund also celebrated 15 years. For the past 15 years, through the generous contributions of our program funders, the leadership of the Advisory Committee and the hard work of our applicants and partners, the Schuylkill River Restoration Fund has supported over 120 projects for the conservation and preservation of the Schuylkill River.

The Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area, Schuylkill Action Network, Exelon Generation, Delaware River Basin Commission, Philadelphia Water Department and Aqua Pennsylvania held a virtual press event on Sept. 10, 2020 to announce recipients of the 2020 Schuylkill River Restoration Fund. The online event included presentations by key partners, as well as several premier project videos. The video showcases were of projects in the Schuylkill River Watershed ranging from stormwater projects along the Schuylkill River Trail, to a stream restoration in the Tulpehocken Creek, to coal silt remediation in the headwaters of Schuylkill

How It's Funded

The Schuylkill River Restoration Fund is the result of a unique public/private partnership. Funders include: Exelon Generation's Limerick Generating Station, the Philadelphia Water Department, Partnership for the Delaware Estuary, MOMs Organic Market, Aqua PA and DTE Energy. A number of partners oversee the fund and its projects. The grants are administered by the Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area, which is managed by the non-profit Schuylkill River Greenway Association. All grant recipients are carefully selected by an advisory committee consisting of:

  • Exelon Generation
  • Delaware River Basin Commission
  • Philadelphia Water Department
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
  • Partnership for the Delaware Estuary
  • Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area
  • Schuylkill Action Network
What are Land Transaction Assistance Grants?

The Schuylkill River Restoration Fund offers matching grants of up to $4,000 per project to assist with transaction costs for permanent land protection projects (conservation easements, full fee acquisitions, donations) within the Schuylkill River watershed. These grants are intended to facilitate the protection of high priority lands for water quality and habitat protection. See grant guidelines above for more details.

Project Statistics
  • $4.6 million of awards since 2006
  • 121 projects funded.  81 completed to date
  • 7 abandoned mine drainage projects completed
  • Agricultural improvements on over 25 Berks County farms
  • 12 stormwater basins retrofitted