Quinnipiac River marsh photo credit: Ian Christmann

Application deadline: January 22, 2021

Contamination of the Quinnipiac River was once so great that it prompted the first pollution control measure in Connecticut and the eventual creation of the first sewage treatment plant in the State. It was also the subject of a lawsuit against the Upjohn Company concerning wastewater discharges from Upjohn's plant in North Haven. The lawsuit resulted in a settlement in 1990 that created the Quinnipiac River Fund at The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, making the River the first in the state of Connecticut to have an endowment at a community foundation that generates income to protect it and its surrounding environment.

The mission of the Quinnipiac River Fund is to improve the environmental quality of the Quinnipiac River and New Haven Harbor and their watersheds. The committee considers projects for grant funding that work toward this goal. Examples include:

  1. Studying the pollution of the waterbodies.
  2. Studying the ecology of the waterbodies.
  3. Researching methods of reducing pollution, or otherwise improving the environmental health of the waterbodies.
  4. Addressing means of reducing both non-point and point sources of pollution to the waterbodies.
  5. Researching the permitting process, researching particular permits, and making recommendations as to findings.
  6. Providing public education about the waterbodies.
  7. Purchasing land in the watersheds for conservation, pollution reduction, and/or improving public access.
  8. Environmental advocacy (note: funding cannot be used for litigation).
  9. Habitat restoration.

Note: Projects involving the education of schoolchildren will be considered for grant funding only if they contribute to improving the environmental quality of the Quinnipiac River and its watershed.

Grant Application

For more information, email Denise Canning or call her at 203-777-7076.

Past Grant Recipients

Visit www.thequinnipiacriver.com for information about past grant recipients. The website was created in 2012 and features a searchable database of approximately 200 projects made possible with grants from the Quinnipiac River Fund. A small sample of those include: a survey of contaminants in the River; the creation of a River canoe guide; educational workshops for municipalities of how to protect the river, the creation of a GIS system database; and reducing pesticide uses in towns that abut the River. The site also includes information on where to canoe or hike along the River, tips for river-friendly lawn care and safe fish consumption and information on the River's history.