EPA Administrator Recognizes Local Allegheny County Group for Volunteer Service
EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson today honored the North Area Environmental Council with the Presidentís Volunteer Service Award in recognition of the groupís more than 30 years of volunteer work in addressing environmental issues in the North Hills area of Allegheny County, Pa.
Bill Moul, president of the North Area Environmental Council, accepted the award on behalf of the all-volunteer organization, whose work has been instrumental in improving the Pine Creek watershed.
ďDuring this yearís National Volunteer Week, itís an honor to recognize the members of the North Area Environmental Council for answering President Bushís call to serve a cause greater than themselves,Ē said Administrator Johnson. ďDedicated volunteers like these are inspiring others to join them in delivering America a brighter, healthier future.Ē
The North Area Environmental Council (NAEC) has more than 30 years experience addressing environmental issues in the North Hills area of Allegheny County. They have recruited more than 70 volunteers to conduct chemical, biological, bacteriological or riparian monitoring of the Pine Creek watershed.
In the 1970s and 1980s, the NAEC began to focus its attention on the Pine Creek watershed, developing a report with extensive mapping of critical areas. The organization has worked on stream bank restoration and riparian buffer remediation, and several NAEC members have served on local municipal environmental advisory councils and planning commissions in the watershed, and worked with staff and students from local schools on environmental projects.
For the past five years, NAEC has increased its watershed presence by chairing the steering committee for the Pine Creek Watershed Assessment and Pine Creek Watershed Coalition. NAEC has recruited more than 70 volunteers to conduct chemical, biological, bacteriological, or riparian monitoring of the watershed. NAEC has initiated a state-funded Riparian and Stream Channel Assessment and is about to initiate a Watershed Conservation Plan for Pine Creek. NAEC and Pine Creek volunteers have spent more than 1,000 hours of volunteer service on these recent activities.
In his January 2002 State of the Union Address, President Bush called on all Americans to make a difference in their communities through volunteer service. He created USA Freedom Corps, an Office of the White House, to strengthen and expand volunteer service. Go to www.volunteer.gov or call 1-877-USA-CORPS to find an existing volunteer service opportunity in your area or to find more information about service programs, including national service programs such as the Peace Corps, AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, and Citizen Corps. USA Freedom Corps is also highlighting youth volunteer service. Visit www.volunteerkids.gov for games and ideas to see how Americaís youth are making a difference.
The Presidentís Volunteer Service Award was created at the Presidentís direction by the Presidentís Council on Service and Civic Participation. The award is available to youth ages 14 and under who have completed 50 or more hours of volunteer service; to individuals 15 and older who have completed 100 or more hours; and to families or groups who have completed 200 or more hours. For more information about the award, please visit www.presidentialserviceawards.gov.
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