RBC Awards $3.2 Million in Funding to Protect Water in More Than 150 Communities Across the Globe

2015 RBC Blue Water Project Leadership and Community Action Grants Announced

TORONTO, June 4, 2015 /CNW/ - Water - it's one of the world's most precious natural resources and fundamental to life on our planet. Our local water sources aren't limitless, and they're under continual and growing stress from population growth, climate change and pollution. Protecting this most precious resource is a growing concern around the world.

RBC today announced the recipients of the 2015 RBC Blue Water Project Leadership and Community Action Grants. RBC will donate more than $3.2 million for water protection programs delivered by 159 organizations across nine countries, including Canada, the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Luxembourg, China, India, Mexico and Grand Bahama. The grants will fund programs that improve urban water quality, enhance storm water management and protect and restore urban waterways.

"At RBC, we know that water is essential to everything we do - from our most basic daily needs to ensuring our global economy can function successfully," stated Dave McKay, president and CEO, RBC. "By supporting the efforts of our Leadership and Community Action Grant recipients, we are able to help raise awareness and fund water projects to help create a sustainable future, assisting our clients both in Canada and across the globe."

Today's announcement is part of RBC's annual Blue Water Day, a time for RBC employees around the globe to come together to protect their local water sources through "Makeovers": clean up, planting and awareness-raising initiatives. In 2014, over 20,000 employees completed 751 Makeovers worldwide and the company is on track to top that participation today.

"RBC has a longstanding commitment to environmental sustainability," continued McKay. "We understand first and foremost that every little bit we do today can help a lot tomorrow. We're proud that our employees around the world are willing to do their part in their communities through Blue Water Day Makeovers."

About the RBC Blue Water Project
The RBC Blue Water Project is a historic, wide-ranging, 10-year global commitment to help protect the world's most precious natural resource: fresh water. Since 2007, RBC has pledged nearly C$44 million to more than 740 charitable organizations worldwide that protect watersheds and promote access to clean drinking water, with an additional $8.8 million pledged to universities for water programs.

The RBC Blue Water Project is focused on supporting initiatives that help protect water in towns, cities, and urbanized areas. For further information, visit www.rbc.com/bluewater.

About RBC Community and Sustainability
Royal Bank of Canada (RY on TSX and NYSE) is Canada's largest bank and one of the largest banks in the world, based on market capitalization. We employ approximately 78,000 full- and part-time employees who serve more than 16 million personal, business, public sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the U.S. and 39 other countries. For more information, please visit rbc.com. RBC is recognized among the world's financial, social and environmental leaders and is listed on the 2015 Dow Jones Sustainability World Index, the DJSI North American Index, the Jantzi Social Index and the FTSE4Good Index. RBC is one of Canada's Greenest Employers, and one of Canada's 50 Most Socially Responsible Corporations. Learn more at www.rbc.com/community-sustainability.

RBC supports a broad range of community initiatives through donations, sponsorships and employee volunteer activities. In 2014, we contributed more than $111 million to causes worldwide, including donations and community investments of more than $76 million and $35 million in sponsorships.

2015 RBC Blue Water Project Leadership and Community Action Grants

NATIONAL - CANADA

Green Communities Foundation, $100,000: Depave Paradise helps to reduce hard surfaces in cities by ripping up unused pavement and replacing it with soil and plants. Based on a sister program in Oregon, Depave Paradise works with local organizations to depave highly visible sites, where volunteers "liberate the soil," using hand tools to pry up the pavement. Native plants, bushes and trees are then planted, and act as filters and sponges for polluted stormwater. The events raise awareness of the issues around the urban water cycle, while making measurable environmental impacts, reducing runoff and contamination, and increasing urban green space.

Lake Ontario Waterkeeper, $100,000: By collecting, archiving, and sharing Canada's water stories, the Watermark Project protects Canada's water heritage. Through the Project, participants discover their personal connection to water, or their "watermark." The Project includes building a digital platform to store, exhibit and share "watermarks," creating a community management program to train volunteers to collect "watermarks" and disseminate information about urban waters, and producing the first collection of "watermarks" to seed an archive.

The Nature Conservancy of Canada - La Societe Canadienne Pour La Conservation De La Nature, $100,000: The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is a leader in identifying and protecting key habitats for aquatic biodiversity. This project will demonstrate solutions to three priority water issues. This demonstration project will take place on NCC properties in British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. These solutions will be scalable across a variety of landscapes and will be shared with other interested stakeholders.

Canadian Environmental Grantmakers' Network, $93,180: Urban freshwater problems often engage multiple groups and sectors, but it's always a challenge to measure how these collective efforts help achieve objectives. How do we demonstrate to others—for both inspiration and accountability reasons—that change is actually taking place? This project will identify common impact metrics and explore how they can be used in an informative, useful and dynamic way. This project will also bring together both the NGO and funder community with leading experts in big data, mapping and visualization.

Canadian Water Research Society, $90,000: The Columbia River Basin crosses one international boundary and seven state boundaries, which means managing water resources is a complex process involving federal, provincial, First Nations and local governments. A project completed with past RBC funding identified a road map for creating opportunities for collaboration to address issues of common concern. This project will help the society lead the way to positive social, economic and environmental change in the international Columbia Basin in a measurable and precedent-setting way.

Safe Drinking Water Foundation, $35,000: The Safe Drinking Water Foundation will develop educational resources to teach students about water based on the results of the 2014 RBC Canadian Water Attitudes Survey. Students will be asked to identify water issues in their community, and help them develop solutions and measure outcomes. Potential topics include the benefits of permeable driveways, how to protect water sources and why leaky faucets should be fixed immediately.

BRITISH COLUMBIA

Regional District Of Okanagan-Similkameen, $100,000: The Okanagan Region is susceptible to the arrival of several aquatic invasive species, most notably Zebra and Quagga mussels. This project will protect aquatic habitats in the Okanagan by preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species through a targeted outreach campaign and by monitoring high-risk lakes for presence of invasive mussels. A mobile, interactive educational trailer will travel to community events and boat launches throughout the region to provide practical information and guidance to boaters.

West Coast Environmental Law Research Foundation, $85,000: Despite warnings that sea levels are rising and extreme weather events are increasing, most Canadian coastal communities have not yet addressed the link between these events and their fresh water resources. A special "storm warning" for coastal cities is needed to build resilience into our communities. West Coast Environmental Law and our partner, the Adaptation to Climate Change Team at Simon Fraser University, have expertise in climate change adaptation and water issues. This project will help us develop resources for local planners, engineers, asset managers and decision makers to teach them about risks climate change. The project will help communities evaluate their resilience, building on lessons learned by municipal leaders in Cape Breton and Vancouver Island.

Local organizations: $91,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by these 14 organizations in British Columbia:

  • Cowichan Lake Salmonid Enhancement Society ($5,000)
  • Fraser River Discovery Centre Society ($7,500)
  • Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary Society ($6,000)
  • Powell River Salmon Society ($5,000)
  • Wildsight ($10,000)
  • Invasive Species Council Of British Columbia (10,000)
  • City Of Surrey ($10,000)
  • Fraser Riverkeeper Society ($5,000)
  • Langley Environmental Partners Society ($5,000)
  • Georgia Strait Alliance ($5,000)
  • Cowichan Community Land Trust Society ($5,000)
  • Comox Valley Land Trust ($5,000)
  • Evergreen ($5,000)
  • Baker Creek Enhancement Society ($5,000)
  • Mainstreams Environmental Society ($2,500)

ALBERTA

Green Calgary Association, $48,500: Calgary has a semi-arid climate; water resources continue to stretch as the city grows. As a result, water conservation has to be a collective effort. The 2013 Southern Alberta floods were an indicator of insufficient storm water infrastructure. Now more than ever, the Association will work with Calgarians to engage them in positive water conservation action, green infrastructure, and educate them about our impact on the Bow and Elbow River ecosystems.

Telus Spark, $45,000: TELUS Spark is a new kind of Science Centre where people of all ages and abilities put their imagination into action. This project will explore the science of the storm water retention pond and surrounding ecosystem on their 6-acre outdoor property to engage adults and children in educational experiences. The project will research and document the construction and engineering behind the existing storm water pond, its functions, how it is connected to other water bodies in the area, and how it fulfills its role.

Town of Sylvan Lake, $30,000: The Town of Sylvan Lake has partnered with several community organizations to develop a wetland restoration project that will enhance storm water quality in the municipality. The project will also provide an ongoing educational experience for local school children and help improve water quality in Marina Bay and Sylvan Lake.

Canadian Parks & Wilderness Society Southern Alberta Chapter, $25,000: The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society Southern Alberta Chapter have offered Water Rangers education programs to students in Calgary since 2007. To date, more than 7,000 youth have been inspired to become watershed stewards and demand for this program continues to grow. This donation will enable us to continue to meet the growing demand for the Water Ranger programs in Calgary schools, and to modify and pilot a new program for adult new immigrants.

Local organizations: $39,300 in Community Action Grants will be shared by these five organizations in Alberta:

  • Town of Chestermere ($10,000)
  • Inside Education Society of Alberta ($7,500)
  • Federation of Alberta Naturalists ($7,000)
  • Weaselhead/Glenmore Park Preservation Society ($4,800)
  • Biosphere Institute of the Bow Valley ($10,000)

TERRITORIES

Tides Canada Foundation, $40,000 (NW Territories): Frame Lake lies in the heart of Yellowknife, the capital of the Northwest Territories. Local knowledge indicates that this lake supported a fishery circa 1935. The reason the fish disappeared from Frame Lake is not fully understood, but it's likely a result of human impacts such as sewage and industrial contaminants that lowered the water quality significantly. Rehabilitation of this lake would not only return a viable ecosystem into an urban setting, but would also provide recreational fishing opportunities.

This project will build on preliminary studies of Frame Lake carried out in 2012 and 2014 by creating a comprehensive plan to rehabilitate the lake. The project will also engage Yellowknife residents on what a successful restored lake would look like and offer to the community.

Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y), $20,000: After the successful RBC-supported launch of Phase I of Yellowstone to Yukon's 'Alberta Headwaters Project' in 2014, Phase II will influence land-use planning, resulting in increased and sustainable headwaters protection. The project will increase public awareness around the value of the watershed, protect habitats and reduce land-use conflicts.

SASKATCHEWAN

Meewasin Valley Authority, $40,000: This project will combine citizen science with conservation field work to protect the quality of urban waterways including the South Saskatchewan River and related drainage channels. The program will involve 1,200 participants in scientific data collection, conservation field work and an online database on local water data. Participants will learn about water quality and the role of the city's population on the health of the river basin. Contractors, staff and volunteers will conduct the fieldwork to enhance the biodiversity of uplands, drainage channels, riparian slopes and shorelines.

MANITOBA

International Institute for Sustainable Development - Institut International Du Développement Durable, $75,000: The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) will work with the City of Winnipeg and other partners to build on the successful Phase I of the Cattails for Clean Community Waterways project, funded by RBC in 2013. Phase II will involve depositing cattail and grasses harvested from urban ditches and prairie sites into the city's composting facility. The facility then produces cattail-grass pellets to be burned for bioenergy by the City. Harvesting these plants captures stored nutrients, preventing them from being released into urban waterways. IISD will also conduct the cost-benefit of turning cattail and grasses into bioenergy, and will communicate the results to decision-makers and the public.

South Basin Mayors and Reeves, $70,000: Municipalities are seeking new and innovative wastewater technologies, but recognize the public has a major role to play when it comes to supporting urban nutrient reduction. This project is a coordinated effort to reduce nutrient loading in our waterways.

Lake Winnipeg Foundation Inc., $54,000: Algae blooms are threatening the health of Lake Winnipeg, the 10th largest freshwater lake in the world. Most of Manitoba's population lives in urban centres and the waterways running through them are the primary vehicles by which algae-causing phosphorus makes its way to the lake. This project will engage residents, municipal and provincial governments and environmental organizations to help protect and preserve Lake Winnipeg.The project includes the development of a communications strategy, working with civic leadership on municipal wastewater treatment issues, working with other organizations on public consultation and outreach and evaluating public attitudes to determine project impacts.

Local organizations: $20,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by these three organizations in Manitoba:

  • Pembina Valley Conservation District ($7,500)
  • Trout Unlimited Canada - Truite Illimitée Canada ($7,500)
  • Downtown Winnipeg Biz ($5,000)

ONTARIO

Lower Thames River Conservation Authority, $75,000: As leaders in the enhancement and protection of the environmental health and quality of the Thames River, the Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority (LTVCA) aims to reduce urban runoff through the implementation of Low Impact Development installations such as rain gardens and a permeable parking lot.

The Living City Foundation, $60,000: Addressing the growing challenges of aging infrastructure and urban watershed renewal requires innovative science-based solutions. The SNAP Program takes a neighbourhood approach to water solutions, bringing together diverse partners to create measurable environmental impact and community transformation. For this project, Toronto and Region Conservation, and the City of Markham will create an innovative approach to resilient infrastructure that can last for generations. This project will engage and inspire residents to conserve their water and consider home retrofits.

Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation, $60,000: The Aurora Community Centre Low Impact Development (LID) project will improve and protect the water flowing into Tannery Creek and ultimately, into Lake Simcoe, a drinking water source for seven municipalities. This LID project is part of a major infrastructure improvement project being planned in a large parking lot beside the arena and two public parks along Tannery Creek. Using bio-engineering and LID techniques, the project will allow for more rain water from the roof and parking lot to filter slowly into the ground. The project will also help restore the severely eroding Tannery Creek banks.

The Board of Management of the Toronto Zoo, $55,000: The Toronto Zoo's Great Lakes Program (GLP) is a free, interactive, aquatic conservation program that has been inspiring participants in urban communities to care for and protect freshwater since 2003. The program has been provided in multiple languages (English, French, Mandarin, Punjabi, Urdu and Tamil) and bilingual presentations to 1,400-1,800 students and educators and 3,000 members of the public.

The new 2014 Great Lakes Teaching and Learning Resource produced by the GLP is a unique opportunity for Grade 8 students in Ontario to learn about water using the Great Lakes as the context for teaching and learning. Habitat rehabilitation, field research and aquatic conservation activities support the GLP mission to foster sustainable water-use practices.

Upper Thames River Conservation Authority, $50,000: The Rain to River Project will improve the quality of local surface water and protect groundwater. With the changing climate, rain storms are more frequent and severe, and the volume of surface runoff is extreme compared to past years. Storm water carries many contaminants that end up in the Thames River and ultimately the Great Lakes. This project will provide a new innovative way to help reduce storm water and protect water quality. Working with their partners, the Authority will demonstrate and promote new infiltration methods to hold retain storm water and release it slowly over time.

Ducks Unlimited Canada, $50,000: This research project will investigate the value of wetlands in flood prevention in southern Ontario. Research specific to the Great Lakes basin is needed to understand the role wetlands play in flood prevention, especially in urban watersheds. There is an urgent need for this research, especially in light of increasingly costly floods in Ontario, which are affecting governments, businesses, farmer, and homeowners, both in terms of direct flood damages and water quality. Research into the value of wetlands to prevent flooding will inform smarter land use planning decisions and help make a business case for wetland conservation.

Georgian Bay Forever, $50,000: This project will encourage community members to stop the spread of Phragmites australis, an invasive species, along the coastal shoreline and beaches in the town of Collingwood located on the shores of Georgian Bay.

Kawartha Region Conservation Authority, $25,000: Kawartha Conservation is launching a new program to teach residents how to manage storm water and snowmelt, and how landscaping projects can help mitigate these issues. This landscaping will be referred to as Bluescaping, and will include rain gardens, rain harvesting and permeable paving. Bluescaping demonstration sites will be constructed in public places and hands-on Bluescaping workshops will be offered to landowners and landscape professionals. Educational resources will be developed for the web and print and shared widely through a door-to-door outreach campaign.

Local organizations: $195,800 in Community Action Grants will be shared by 30 organizations in Ontario:

  • Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority ($10,000)
  • Reforest London ($10,000)
  • City of Hamilton - Hamilton Water ($10,000)
  • Ottawa Riverkeeper ($10,000)
  • Kenollie Public School ($10,000)
  • Bay Area Restoration Council of Hamilton and Halton Inc. ($8,000)
  • The Halton Region Conservation Foundation ($7,500)
  • Hamilton Conservation Foundation ($7,500)
  • Saugeen Valley Conservation Authority ($7,500)
  • Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point ($7,500)
  • Maitland Valley Conservation Authority ($7,500)
  • The Raising Region Conservation Authority ($7,500)
  • The Rideau Valley Conservation Foundation ($7,500)
  • Manitoulin Streams Improvement Association ($7,500)
  • The Bruce Trail Conservancy ($6,000)
  • Friends of Fort Erie's Creeks ($5,000)
  • Waterloo Region Green Solutions ($5,000)
  • Elora Environment Centre ($5,000)
  • Brant Waterways Foundation ($5,000)
  • Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority ($5,000)
  • Essex Region Conservation Foundation ($5,000)
  • The Conserver Society of Hamilton and District Inc. ($5,000)
  • The Couchiching Conservancy ($5,000)
  • Peterborough Green-Up Association ($5,000)
  • Lower Trent Region Conservation Authority ($5,000)
  • Central Lake Ontario Conservation Authority ($5,000)
  • Region of Peel ($5,000)
  • Friends of Ecological and Environmental Learning ($4,800)
  • Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority ($4,500)
  • Rotary Club of Listowel Charitable Foundation ($2,500)

QUEBEC

Fondation De La Faune Du Québec, $40,000: Quebec City's main water reservoir, Lake Saint-Charles, supplies drinking water to 300,000 people. Unfortunately, the pressures on the drainage basin have intensified over the last few decades, accelerating its degradation. Many of the lake's tributaries are contributing to this degradation, including the Fossé Bellevue. This project will help improve the quality and management of runoff from the Fossé Bellevue through reforestation, watercourse clean ups, awareness building activities, rain garden development and the acquisition of riparian land to create a filter marsh.

Groupe D'Éducation Et D'Écosurveillance De L'Eau, $20,000: Imagine 3,000 Quebec youth aged 10 to 21 involved in the protection and conservation of aquatic ecosystems. That's exactly what the Adopt a River network is. In partnership with local stakeholders, young students will study their urban waterways while being encouraged to take care of it. More than a simple educational project, Adopt a River offers the unique opportunity for an educational experience, and to be proactive in solving current problems. It gives young people a chance to get actively involved in water conservation while allowing them to apply their knowledge. Thanks to support from a network of organizations and schools across the province, the project will offer young people a unique scientific experience and the opportunity to get involved in their community, while working toward a common goal: preserving urban waterways.

Negawatts Production, $20,000: This project will substantially reduce household water use through water efficiency measures proposed during personalized home visits. Program representatives will visit Saguenay-lac-St-Jean households and businesses to teach them how changes in behaviour can help reduce water consumption and, in turn, energy consumption.

Fondation De La Commission Scolaire Des Portages-De-L'Outaouais, $20,000: This program supports 15 primary, secondary and adult education schools by helping develop the environmental citizenship of students. The program includes environmental education events for students and training for employees. Five themes will be highlighted, including water. The program targets 10,000 students per two-year phase, not including the parents and families that will be made more aware indirectly.

Local organizations: $30,000 will be shared by six organizations in Quebec:

  • Fondation Du Cégep Marie-Victorin ($5,000)
  • Action Saint-François ($5,000)
  • Bassin Versant Saint-Maurice (Bvsm) ($5,000)
  • Accès Fleuve / Comité Zone D'Intervention Prioritaire (Zip) Ville-Marie ($5,000)
  • Nature-Action Quebec Inc. ($5,000)
  • Fondation Du Centre De Recherche Sur Les Biotechnologies Marines ($5,000)

ATLANTIC CANADA

The Clean Nova Scotia Foundation, $43,161: The Community Stormwater Engagement Project combines youth education with residential storm water management, community events and demonstration sites. This project will build capacity in Yarmouth to improve storm water management.

PWMG-GSBP Inc., 30,000: This project will oversee the monitoring of water quality at 20 stations across the Peticodiac River's watershed. Storm water management initiatives will also be implemented in the urban core, offering opportunities for community engagement. This will be the first project that integrates science, action and education around urban water issues in the Petitcodiac River watershed.

Local organizations: $46,000 will be shared by these seven organizations in Atlantic Canada:

  • The Bowring Park Foundation Inc. ($10,000)
  • Atlantic Coastal Action Program (ACAP) Saint John ($9,600)
  • Atlantic Coastal Action Program Cape Breton ($7,500)
  • Newfoundland and Labrador Environment Network Inc. ($5,000)
  • City of Charlottetown ($5,000)
  • Five Bridge Wilderness Heritage Trust ($4,900)
  • Town of Stratford ($4,000)

UNITED STATES (financial references in USD)

New York Harbor Foundation, $100,000: The Billion Oyster Project is a long-term, large-scale plan to restore one billion live oysters in New York Harbor over the next twenty years and, in the process, educate thousands of young people in the Metropolitan area about the ecology and economy of their local marine environment. Building on programs developed over the last several years, this project will expand operations in five areas: oyster production, reef construction, shell collection, middle school curriculum and public engagement. To date, the Foundation has grown 11.5 million oysters, collected 50 tons of oyster shells from local restaurants and engaged 2,000 public school students in the project. Phase II will inform how best to achieve the restoration goal of one billion oysters and 200 acres of oyster reef to the Harbor by 2034.

Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, $85,000: MacArthur Meadow is in the Tennessee Hollow Watershed in the Presidio of San Francisco. At present, the meadow is full of fill materials and invasive vegetation. This project will restore the site, including the removal of 15 invasive plant species and 10,000 cubic yards of fill. The site will be replanted with 60 native plant species. The Conservancy will also expand existing watershed education programs for local youth and share lessons learned with the scientific and park communities.

The New York Botanical Garden, $50,000: The Green Zone is a reconstruction project for a public area of The New York Botanical Garden (NYBG) that will preserve, protect, manage and monitor a key urban waterway in NYC. The Green Zone will reduce paved surfaces, increase infiltration of storm water to extract pollutants, and reduce storm water flow. NYBG will redesign the entrance path and adjacent landscapes to the East entrance, as well as the Family Garden. This project also aims to raise public awareness around the importance of clean urban water and conservation in partnership with NYBG's Children's Education Programs.

Conservation Lands Foundation Inc., $20,000: The Conservation Lands Foundation (CLF) will help restore 25 floodplain acres in the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument, near Taos. CLF will partner with a veterans-youth conservation corps, the Bureau of Land Management and non-profit volunteers to re-establish native plants, control run-off, and improve water quality and habitat. RBC's funding will ensure a nine-member veterans-youth corps receives pay, training, experience and education awards. It will also help inform communities about river restoration and the role BLM's National Conservation Lands—of which the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument is a key part—have in protecting water quality.

Local organizations: $327,000 in Community Action Grants will be shared by these 49 organizations in the United States:

  • Trout Unlimited - St. Cloud Chapter ($2,000)
  • The Fund For Lake George Inc. ($3,000)
  • Friends of Ballona Wetlands ($3,000)
  • Piscataquog Land Conservancy ($3,000)
  • Hudson Highlands Land Trust Inc. ($3,000)
  • The River Project Inc. ($3,000)
  • Maine Island Trail Association ($3,500)
  • National Aquarium in Baltimore Inc. ($3,500)
  • Wildlands Restoration Volunteers ($4,000)
  • Bronx River Alliance Inc. ($4,000)
  • Hudson River Watershed Alliance Inc. ($4,000)
  • Rensselaer Land Trust Inc. ($4,000)
  • River Management Society ($5,000)
  • Delaware Futures Inc. ($5,000)
  • Scenic Hudson Inc. ($5,000)
  • Rocky Mountain College ($5,000)
  • Sierra Nevada Journeys ($5,000)
  • Friends of the Merrimack River Greenway Trail ($5,000)
  • Gundalow Company ($5,000)
  • Citizens Campaign Fund for the Environment ($5,000)
  • Otsego Land Trust Inc. ($5,000)
  • Housatonic Valley Association Inc. ($5,000)
  • Chesapeake Bay foundation Inc. ($5,000)
  • Battenkill Conservancy - New York ($5,000)
  • Puget Sound Reservation Fund ($5,000)
  • New River Conservancy ($7,000)
  • National Audubon Society Inc. ($7,500)
  • Save The Bays Youth Environmental Ambassadors ($7,500)
  • Montana Audubon ($7,500)
  • Great Swamp Watershed Association ($7,600)
  • Friends of Van Cortland Park Inc. ($7,600)
  • Buildon Inc. ($8,000)
  • Great River Greening ($9,000)
  • Alliance for the Great Lakes ($9,000)
  • Tennessee Aquarium ($9,000)
  • Tampa Baywatch Inc. ($9,800)
  • Heal The Bay ($10,000)
  • Wyland Foundation ($10,000)
  • Village of Niles ($10,000)
  • Living Lands & Waters ($10,000)
  • Spark Youth ($10,000)
  • Minnesota Landscape Arboretum ($10,000)
  • Friends of the Mississippi River ($10,000)
  • Camp Fire USA Minnesota Council ($10,000)
  • Stony Brook-Millstone Watersheds Association ($10,000)
  • Reeves-Reed Arboretum ($10,000)
  • Rocking The Boat Inc. ($10,000)
  • Stroud Water Research Center ($10,000)
  • Pennsylvania Resources Council ($10,000)
  • Reach Foundation ($10,000)

INTERNATIONAL

AUSTRALIA

Peter Cullen Trust, $40,000: The Peter Cullen Trust Science to Policy Leadership Program will encourage key water leaders to work together across states and sectors to improve urban water management.

Landcare Australia, $10,000: The organization's Protecting Our Urban Waterways Program will engage community volunteers in a range of urban water conservation activities including water quality monitoring, garbage and weed removal. Landcare Australia will work with a number of local organizations to coordinate on the ground activities and encourage engagement by local volunteers to protect and restore urban waterways in the Greater Sydney region.

CHINA

The Shangri-La Institute for Sustainable Communities, $15,000: Due to its rapid development and growing population, Beijing faces a serious water crisis. The Youth Initiative for Beijing Water project will partner with schools throughout Beijing and Hubei to encourage public participation in sustainable water resource management. The project will engage students and communities in a process of learning and action.

INDIA

Frank Water, $44,111: The city of Agra, home of the famous Taj Mahal, has 432 settlements. The city is dependent on the River Yamuna for its water needs, but the river is highly polluted. This project will target 500 households in two communities. Through careful community engagement, training and planning, appropriate solutions for water conservation and waste disposal management (including rainwater harvesting and green technologies for wastewater treatment) will be designed to create a model of sustainable urban water resource management.

LUXEMBOURG

Fondation Hëllef fir d'Natur, $50,000: The Big Jump encourages citizens to jump in the water to demand the improvement of bathing waters and surface water in general. The event also raises awareness of water quality and river restoration issues.

MEXICO

International Rainwater Harvesting Alliance, $50,000: The Blue Schools Program, created by the International Rainwater Harvesting Alliance (IRHA), provides clean water and sanitation in schools in developing countries. This program will provide a sustainable supply of clean water and improve the sanitation conditions in schools through the use of rainwater harvesting.

UNITED KINGDOM

Thames21, $100,000: The Rainkeeper Project will build off the success of a previous Thames21 project, the Upper Thames Communities initiative, but will place a stronger focus on environmental education activities for local schools and youth groups. The project also includes the construction of Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS) in the area. SuDS mimic natural drainage processes to reduce the effect of runoff from developments, provide biodiversity benefits and help with flood risk management and water quality management. Thames 21 will identify suitable areas to install SuDS, and work with stakeholders to design and implement them. The Rainkeeper Project will also run an educational program for schools to raise awareness about water issues, increase understanding and provide solutions for threats such as pollution and flooding.

SOURCE RBC

For further information:

For more information, or to speak with an RBC Blue Water Project spokesperson, please contact:
Jason Graham, RBC, Communications
Erin Voth, AMG Digital, 905-238-8058 ext. 6421


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