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EPA supports environmental education projects in MT

Release Date: 6/25/2002
Contact Information:
800 227-8917 x6605,

Release Date: 6/25/2002
Contact Information:
800 227-8917 x6613,

Release Date: 6/25/2002
Contact Information:
800 227-8917 x7814

      Denver -- Continuing its commitment to increase understanding of the importance of protecting the environment, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) funded six environmental education (EE) projects in Montana this year.

      "These grants help students and teachers develop their capacity to make informed decisions that affect environmental quality," Regional Administrator Robbie Roberts said, "These kinds of hands-on projects involve students of all ages and promote the understanding that we are inextricably connected to and dependent on the environment."

      Since 1992, EPA has awarded 2,500 grants totalling $30 million. For more information on the EPA Region 8 grant program, visit

      The recipients for 2002 are:

      Birch Creek Outdoor Education Center - $5,000
Paul Clarke, Campus Box 100, 710 South Atlantic, Dillon, MT 59725

K-12 Experimental Environmental Education Program

The 2002 Environmental Education Project is a multi-tiered project involving students, teachers and administrators from town, rural and tribal schools. It seeks to expand the teacher training opportunities we offer by increasing our direct work with UM-Western and Salish-Kootenia Tribal College educators and student teachers. The program will expand current conservation education offerings, and intensify the cultural and social contribution to the community.

Bitteroot Ecological Awareness Resources, Inc. - $5,000
Susanne Meikle, PO Box 2135 , 615 Pinckney, Hamilton, MT 59840

Fire Ecology Pilot Program

Through BEAR’s Environmental Presenters Program, local experts will bring the natural world into the classrooms and take classrooms out to the natural world. This community was highly impacted by wildfire in 2000. The fire ecology program will supplement text-based curricula with experienced-based learning. It will give teachers support from experts in refining their environmental teaching, and provide resources to encourage locally-specific and community-based education. The goal is an informed student population that holds greater interest in their community's ecology.

Helena Forest Foundation - $4,500
Liz Burke, 2880 Skyway Drive, Helena, MT 59601

Senior Naturalist Program

The Helena Forest Foundation, through a Senior Naturalist Program (SNP), will promote conservation and environmental stewardship with community youth organizations. The program will later expand into a year-round after school enrichment program. By drawing upon Montana’s large resource of senior retirees and youth organization needs, SNP will foster cross-generational connections and an enhanced appreciation of natural resources.

Livingston School District 1 & 4 - $4,345
Julie Hancock, 132 South B Street, Livingston, MT 59047

The Yellowstone River Project: A Wet & Wild Exploration

Students will participate in both classroom and field activities focused on the Yellowstone River and its community value. The goal is to increase students' knowledge and appreciation for the River which will improve future decision making about the Yellowstone River. To achieve this goal, The Yellowstone River Project (YRP) will train certified teachers through the Montana Watercourse workshop, Project WET. Project WET and International Fly Fishing Center materials will be used to design a two-week program for 2nd-6th grade students.

Missoula County Public School District Number 1 - $5,000
Susan Arthur, 215 South 6th West, Missoula, MT 59801

Forest Outdoor Environmental Education Program

This program will offer an outdoor EE program coordinated by the Missoula YMCA, in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). Community environmental issues will be examined in depth, and teachers will receive advanced training. Students' educational horizons will be enhanced through a community-based partnership that supplements the formal curriculum.

Montana Environmental Education Association (MEEA) - $24,500
Steve Eshbaugh, Bozeman, MT 59773

On-line Environmental Education Database for Montana

This project will improve and expand State EE programs using a sophisticated and comprehensive searchable information clearinghouse for EE resources. Based on the success of this program in Utah and Colorado, we expect to boost our organizational memberships from 48-120.