Current Programs

Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Agricultural Water Quality Restoration

Cover crop

The MACC was awarded a GLRI grant in 2016. The goal of this project is to reduce sediment and nutrient loading into Lake Macatawa, and ultimately Lake Michigan, by implementing agricultural best management practices (BMPs) in areas that need them the most (see map below.  BMPs include residue management, cover crops, gypsum application, and water and sediment control basins. This project is in partnership with the Outdoor Discovery Center Macatawa Greenway and Project Clarity.  Project Clarity was publicly launched in 2013 as an initiative to restore the Macatawa Watershed using privately donated funds. The grant is providing over $300,000 to install BMPs and Project Clarity is providing an additional $148,000 in local dollars. As of fall 2017, there were 15 participating farmers enrolled in a variety of practices for various lengths of time. There are over 2,000 acres of cover crops, 1,400 acres of gypsum application, and 1,200 acres of residue management under contract to be implemented. One water and sediment control basin (WASCOB) with an adjoining grassed waterway was installed in 2017.

There are still funds available to implement BMPs in the watershed. Interested producers should contact Agricultural Technician Rob Vink for more information

GLC_map

Project Clarity

Project Clarity is an initiative of the Outdoor Discovery Center Macatawa Greenway that was launched in 2013. The initiative included a private fundraising campaign to support the implementation of various best management practices to improve water quality, including agricultural practices. An Agricultural Committee was formed to oversee the allocation of funds for agricultural BMPs. The Committee reviews applications and makes funding decisions. The Committee is supported by staff from the MACC and the Outdoor Discovery Center. Farmer’s wishing to apply for Project Clarity funding can download and fill out an application, or you can contact Rob Vink to for more information: rvink@the-macc.org or 395-2688.