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Torreon Wash project selected for EPA grant

Release Date: 08/20/2007
Contact Information: Dave Bary or Tressa Tillman at 214-665-2200 or

$13 million to flow to watershed groups nationwide

(Dallas, Texas – August 20, 2007) A project to improve the Torreon Wash has been selected as one of 16 national finalists eligible to apply for more than $13 million in available grants from the Environmental Protection Agency.

The funding is part of EPA’s Targeted Watersheds Grants Program and helps selected organizations implement a variety of activities to enrich the health of their watersheds.

“Watershed health is important to providing clean, safe water for the communities where we live, work and play,” said EPA Regional Administrator Richard E. Greene. “These grants help EPA and our local partners to achieve our shared goal of supporting and sustaining clean water and healthy ecosystems.”

The project to improve the Torreon Wash will be managed by the Rio Puerco Alliance. Torreon Wash lies within the Arroyo Chico subwatershed in northwestern New Mexico and suffers from almost non-existent riparian cover, as well as one of the highest levels of bare ground and erosion.

Key strategies of the proposed project focus on decreasing sedimentation and erosion, increasing desired vegetation, decreasing non-native and invasive species, enhancing infiltration of precipitation, and decreasing runoff. The project aims to teach future generations how to improve water quality, while increasing water quantity and agricultural yield. Once completed, project managers hope to see a significant reduction in the amount of sediment going into the Rio Puerco and improved local economies. They plan to conduct extensive outreach to share project techniques with other communities.

EPA initiated the Targeted Watersheds Grant Program in 2002 to encourage successful community-based approaches to protect and restore the nation's watersheds. Since 2003, more than $40 million has been provided through targeted watersheds grants.

More information on the Targeted Watersheds Grant Program and this year’s finalists is available at

To learn more about activities in EPA Region 6, please visit