Friday, February 22, 2013 - 5:02am

The New York State Pollution Prevention Institute, a statewide organization providing comprehensive and integrated programming in technology research, development and training aimed at promoting sustainability across New York state, has announced recipients of its 2012-2013 Community Grant Program.

Following the completion of a competitive review process, the institute is funding 12 proposals from organizations statewide. Anahita Williamson, NYSP2I's director, says each of the initiatives will go a long way toward tackling challenging environmental opportunities in all corners of the state.

"We're very pleased to announce the funding of these forward-looking organizations that are all working toward a single goal: reducing our environmental footprint and making our state more sustainable for future generations," says Williamson.

The winning proposals include:

  • Pharmaceutical Collection Program Outreach Education: Monroe County Department of Environmental Services will expand upon an existing outreach program to raise awareness for the county's pharmaceutical collection program in Rochester.
  • Know Your Environment Numbers: Sustainable Long Island is creating an awareness campaign to assist health-system leaders, administrators and employees to better understand how health-care facilities affect the environment and what they can do to reduce pollution levels.
  • Homeowner Education for Improved Private Decentralization Wastewater Management in Two Lakeshore Communities: Cornell University will host workshops around Chautauqua Lake in Chautauqua County and Canadarago Lake in Otsego County to educate homeowners on the maintenance of the decentralized wastewater treatment system and their potential impact on these lakes.
  • Collect, Construct, Change: New York Hall of Science will develop and offer a camp program that utilizes up-to-the minute educational technology to engage middle-school youth in learning about air-quality issues in their neighborhoods in New York City.
  • Healthier Nail Salons Project: New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health will promote safer working conditions and processes by developing and widely disseminating informational and educational materials in four languages - English, Spanish, Korean, and Nepalese - for workers in nail salons in the greater New York City area.
  • Training the Trainers: Preventing Pollution through Professional Development: Center of Excellence at Syracuse University will provide a teacher conference on April 30 on sustainable materials management, green infrastructure, and a "STEM" teacher-to-teacher exchange of best practices in teaching environmental subjects.
  • Northern Manhattan Compost Bioremediation: We Act for Environmental Justice will educate and engage students of the Washington Heights Expeditionary Learning School (or WHEELS) in a composting and waste reduction project.
  • Rainwater Harvesting Ancient Technologies to Solve Modern Problems: GrowNYC will target New York state residents to take advantage of a new how-to manual highlighting stormwater management best practices, with simple steps for community gardeners or city dwellers to follow - including assessing the possibilities for their site and how to implement improvements.
  • Residents Engaging Residents in a Building to Building Energy Challenge in Public Housing: Green City Force will train urban young adults to provide outreach to New York City Housing Authority residents by creating a competition between housing areas to be more environmentally and energy conscious.
  • Pollution Prevention Public Education Campaign: Erie County Department of Environment and Planning will undertake a public-service-announcement campaign with radio spots, bus rail advertising and bus billboards to raise awareness about toxic chemical use and its impact on the stormwater system in Western New York.
  • Storm Drain Identification and Education: Erie County Department of Environment and Planning will raise awareness and encourage residents to prevent pollutants from getting into sewers by placing metal markers by storm drains stating "No Dumping, Drains to Waterway."
  • Erie County Envirothon: Erie County Soil & Water Conservation District will host a two-day environmental education competition with high school students in Western New York.

The goal of NYSP2I's Community Grants Program is to support projects that raise awareness and understanding of pollution prevention practices and lead to implementation at the local level. A request for applications is typically are announced in the fall. For more information, go to

About the New York State Pollution Prevention Institute:

The New York State Pollution Prevention Institute is housed at Rochester Institute of Technology and provides statewide, comprehensive and integrated programming in technology research, development and diffusion, training and education aimed at making New York state more sustainable for workers, the public, the environment and the economy. NYSP2I was created in 2008 through a grant from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Additional partners include Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Clarkson University, State University of New York at Buffalo and New York's 10 Regional Technology Development Centers. To learn more, go to

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