The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded $2.5m to the South Dakota Department of the Environment and Natural Resources to protect the quality of water in the state under a Nonpoint Source Program Clean Water Act Section 319 grant.

These grants are given to states to implement environmental programs that address nonpoint source pollution in surface and groundwater in order to meet and maintain water quality standards.

“Providing funds directly to South Dakota emphasizes the importance of partnering with states to help address their unique and critical environmental challenges,” said EPA Administrator Pruitt. “EPA is making investments like this grant to help empower states who know best how to protect their natural resources, and grow their economy while solving real environmental problems in local communities.”

Under this program, a total of six proposals were selected this year for funding that include watershed planning and implementation projects. The program works through a set of overarching principles that emphasize voluntary and incentive-based participation, locally-led projects, partnerships, measurable water quality improvement, and effective and efficient program administration. For more information, visit

Nonpoint sources of pollution continue to be recognized as one of the nation’s largest remaining cause of surface water quality impairments. The effects of nonpoint source pollution can be seen within the lakes, streams, and rivers of South Dakota. Nonpoint source pollutants causing the majority of South Dakota’s surface water quality impairments are pathogens, sediment, and nutrients.