The Indianapolis-based Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust has announced grants totaling more than $4.9 million to a coalition of nonprofits in support of a three-year initiative to protect and restore the White River.
The grants to the Partners for the White Rivers collaborative — which includes the Central Indiana Land Trust, the daVinci Pursuit, Friends of the White River, the Hoosier Environmental Council, the Indiana Wildlife Federation, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, Reconnecting to Our Waterways, the Nature Conservancy, White River Alliance, and the Pulliam Charitable Trust — will support projects focused on improving water quality and public access and fostering greater understanding and appreciation of the value of 362-mile-long river, as well as providing benefits to the communities and wildlife that depend on the river and surrounding habitat.
The initiative's goals include better water quality monitoring; the reduction of fertilizer-related pollution, manure runoff, and risks posed by coal ash; improvements to water quality; the creation of an annual Water Summit; and increased awareness on the part of farmers, policy makers, and the public with respect to how their actions affect the watershed. The initiative also will promote infrastructure improvements at the Oliver's Woods, White Owl, and White River Bluffs nature preserves; art, science, and education installations; canoe launch construction; and environmental awareness programming for children and adults.
"The value of a clean and protected White River to our communities, wildlife, and economy cannot be overstated," said Kent Agness, a trustee of the Pulliam Charitable Trust. "The work to be accomplished through the Partners for the White River will significantly improve water quality, while allowing more people to enjoy the river and become involved in protecting it for the communities and wildlife who depend upon it."