Nicor Gas has provided a $47,000 grant to support Sugar Creek Restoration Project conservation efforts for use at Sugar Creek Golf Course in Villa Park to help address the loss of wetland and plant habitat for avian and aquatic species native to the area.
Working with community partners such as the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, DuPage County, Kane-DuPage Soil & Water Conservation District and Elmhurst Park District, the project will remove a dam to assist fish passage, stabilize 2,400 linear feet of shoreline and assist wetland creation and native plantings at the course.
The grant was made possible through the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration Program, which supports projects that develop community stewardship of natural resources and address water quality issues in priority watersheds across the country.
The Five Star grants are awarded through a partnership between Nicor Gas' parent Southern Company and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and other public and private funders. This year the program awarded 46 grants totaling $1.7 million to improve water quality and aquatic habitat benefiting species and communities in 22 states and the District of Columbia. Grantees have pledged an additional $4.4 million, creating a total conservation impact of more than $6.1 million.
"It is vital to protect and preserve the natural resources in Illinois," said Melvin D. Williams, president of Nicor Gas. "Our long-standing partnership with the NFWF and the Five Stars and Urban Waters Restoration Program are fundamental to our commitment to improve the communities where we live, work and serve, and make customers' lives better."
Sugar Creek is a tributary of Salt Creek, which ultimately drains to the Des Plaines River. This conservation work is one small segment of the larger Lower Salt Creek Watershed-Based Plan. The Sugar Creek Restoration Project is expected to begin in October and conclude next year.