START is very pleased to announce that MTN DEW, a division of PepsiCo, has awarded START a $5,000 grant to enhance a local stormwater pond as part of their Outdoor Grants Program. START is one of just 40 environmental organizations to be selected from over 1,000 applicants nationwide to receive this important grant. MTN DEW will award a total of $200,000 to the 40 organizational winners for their programs to improve or restore the environment.

The START funding will be used to support the development of a promising new process that helps reduce the muck level in stormwater ponds. This can be a difficult problem as stormwater ponds age over the years. The process relies on an infusion of microbes naturally found in Florida stormwater ponds to help “digest” the top few inches of the excess muck that collects at the bottom of a pond. In early tests, this process is also lowering the total nitrogen in the pond, a major food source for red tide and other Harmful Algal Blooms, downstream.

We are now working with a local Suncoast community and a well-known pond maintenance company to choose an appropriate site to assess the efficacy of this promising new water quality process.

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