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State of Maine Gets $34,000 to Manage Pesticide Threats

Release Date: 01/31/2005
Contact Information:

Contact: Sheryl Rosner, EPA Office of Public Affairs, (617) 918-1865

For Immediate Release: January 31, 2005; Release # sr050117

BOSTON: A Maine project that will test pesticide management programs in Portland and Brunswick has received a $34,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. This grant was one of two given out this year by EPA New England under its Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program.

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Food and Rural Resources has received the grant to fund its project, “Yardscaping: Minimizing Reliance on Pesticides by Example Using Demonstration, Outreach and Integrated Pest Management Training.” The Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program is meant to support research and education that reduces risks posed by pesticide use.
This project will feature demonstration sites in Portland and Brunswick. The project in Portland, which will be replicable, is targeted towards helping homeowners and landscapers select the best variety of turf and use less lawn chemicals to maintain the turf. It will accomplish this by using real-life exhibits to demonstrate what lawn variety will grow best on their home soil type. This project contributes to EPA’s “Lawn and the Environment Initiative” which was started in 2004 by EPA headquarters and the Center for Resource Management, a non-profit in Utah.

The Brunswick demonstration site will feature low input practices on high-use public athletic turf. This demonstration site will be particularly beneficial to municipal park and public space managers.

"This project will help farmers with this new regional crop to manage pests without doing unnecessary damage to the public or the environment," said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator of EPA's New England Office. "Integrated Pest Management shows us how to manage pests minimizing the risks to the health of our citizens or our environment.”

The other PESP grant was awarded to The University of Vermont Department of Plant and Soil Science for its project, “Reducing Pesticide Risks in Cold Climate Wine Grape Production.” Wine grape production is a new crop for northern New England and this project will create informational and educational materials for growers in the early stages of wine grape production. The project will be the foundation of new, environmentally sound pest management strategies for this emerging new agricultural industry in New England.

EPA also this month announced a total of nearly $100,000 in grants for projects through EPA's Strategic Agricultural Initiative. These grants support families who produce small acreage crops. Grants from both programs are meant to reduce risks to people and the environment from pesticide use.

Since the agricultural initiative began in 2001, EPA New England has awarded more than $330,000 to producers. Since 1996, more than $400,000 has been awarded to New England states under the Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program.

For more information on EPA’s Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program visit:

Related Information:
Pesticides Grants
Pesticide Program
Pesticides Enforcement