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Seeking solutions to a global crisis

The most under-recognized environmental threat in America is water pollution caused by algal blooms. Our company has taken several steps to ensure that our products are not contributing to this problem. Yet we can't ignore that this crisis exists in every state, impacting millions of people and causing billions of dollars in economic damage. We partnered with environmental photographer Andy Mann, one of the few people in the world are capable of capturing both the beauty and the distress of America’s most important water bodies.

The George Barley Water Prize

A Global Phosphorus Challenge. Four stages. $10 million. One big opportunity for impact. Across the globe, water bodies are often crippled by phosphorus fueled algae blooms. Nearly a decade ago, ScottsMiracle-Gro began removing phosphorus from its lawn fertilizer products, leading an effort focused on water quality. It was a small but important step. And we know more needs to be done to solve this global crisis.That's why The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation is proud to present The Everglades Foundation’s George Barley Water Prize.

National Partner Network

The ScottsMiracle-Gro Foundation is supporting the work of leading environmental organizations in critical areas across the United States. The National Partner Network focuses work on water quality and water conservation as well as protection and expansion of pollinator habitats.

The Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and ScottsMiracle-Gro have developed a long-term agreement to work together on two specific projects: a consumer education effort on the proper use of lawn and garden products through the organization’s “Businesses for the Bay” program, and an effort to help residential homeowners throughout the Bay region create gardens that will act as natural rainwater catchments and filters to improve protection for the Bay under the Alliance’s “RiverWise Communities” program.

Program location: mid-Atlantic states

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Fueled by runoff pollution, Lake Erie is experiencing the worst algal blooms in a generation, threatening public health and the future of communities around the lake. ScottsMiracle-Gro is supporting the Alliance for the Great Lakes’ work with scientists, local community leaders, volunteers, elected and agency officials to ensure the right regulations and protections are in place to reduce pollution and restore Lake Erie for all.

Program location: Great Lakes

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The Alliance for Water Efficiency (AWE) is a national thought leader driving the smart use of limited water resources. Local water management agencies, businesses, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations all look to AWE to be a leading voice for water efficiency and a knowledgeable source to help build successful water conservation programs. ScottsMiracle-Gro is working with AWE to better understand the water saving opportunities in outdoor landscape settings, through AWE’s OutdoorWater Savings Research Initiative.

Program location: National

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The Council for Watershed Health (CWH) has been a leader in the Greater Los Angeles Area on applied research and analysis that informs policy change and leads to a more sustainable Southern California region. Through collaboration and partnerships, their programs address diverse issues such as urban stormwater management, community capacity building, the LA River Watershed Monitoring Program and the promotion of sustainable landscapes on Green Streets and in schools. CWH is lending its expertise to ScottsMiracle-Gro to help shape a public education campaign to reduce residential outdoor water use, and with support from Scotts, will conduct new research to create a residential education program on how to properly maintain beneficial landscaping during a drought.

Program location: California

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In 2017 The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation announced its sponsorship of the world’s largest water prize. Run by Foundation grant partner the Everglades Foundation, The George Barley Water Prize offers $10 million to the person or team that develops the most cost-effective technology to remove phosphorus from freshwater bodies.

Program location: National

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Similar to the educational effort with Tampa Bay Watch, ScottsMiracle-Gro and the Galveston Bay Foundation are teaming up to engage school-aged Texans to establish marsh grass nurseries at their schools for replanting at coastal restoration sites. Once replanted, the marsh grass roots hold soils in place, preventing erosion that would otherwise negatively impact the Bay’s water quality. As in Tampa, this program gives children a hands-on opportunity to learn the environmental benefits of growing and maintaining plants while developing their technical skill to properly care for those plants into maturity.

Program location: Texas

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The National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) is the nonprofit organization that represents America’s 3,000 conservation districts, their state/territory associations, and the 17,000 men and women who serve on their governing boards. In 2012, NACD teamed up with ScottsMiracle-Gro to launch a national landowner education program that local conservation districts could use to promote water quality efforts. The program, “Backyard Conservation: Lawns and the Environment” is a multi-media package conservation district staff can use with its many landowner constituents to help drive behavioral change that will prevent nutrients from reaching local waterways. Since then, ScottsMiracle-Gro has been the primary sponsor of an ongoing education series that NACD offers to local urban water protection leaders about best resource management practices.

Program location: National

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To address the critical need to increase pollinator habitat for beneficial insects, such as honey bees, monarch butterflies and others, The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation and the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) teamed up on a new “Parks for Pollinators” campaign in 2018. This national campaign is aimed at raising public awareness of pollinator health and encouraging local action through public parks and pollinator gardens.

Program location: National

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The Nature Conservancy has coupled innovative programming to reduce the amount of nutrients reaching the Great Lakes with traditional land restoration work for a holistic approach to prevent and mitigate nutrient runoff. ScottsMiracle-Gro will support this multi-faceted work in three ways: helping to establish an Ohio Water Trust to leverage public-private partnerships to accomplish the most critical water quality improvement projects in Ohio, restoring coastal wetlands along Lake Erie to filter phosphorus and other pollutants before it reaches the Lake, and expanding a successful agricultural nutrient management program into the Ohio River Basin to reduce the amount of nutrient runoff causing algal blooms in the Ohio River and, ultimately, Gulf of Mexico hypoxia.

Program location: Ohio

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ScottsMiracle-Gro has supported New York League of Conservation Voters Education Fund's water quality work since 2013. NYLCVEF has focused on educating New Yorkers about actions that can reduce nitrogen from reaching waterways such as Long Island Sound. NYLCVEF’s work has also enabled thousands of New Yorkers to voice their support for water quality protection efforts to the state's elected leadership.

Program location: New York

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In 2017 the Foundation began funding the North Shore Land Alliance’s Long Island Water Education Program. In a three-session series tied to their STEM education, fourth, fifth and sixth graders in 19 schools learn about protecting and conserving water resources.

Program location: New York

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Lake Erie is the most fragile of the Great Lakes, and has been plagued in recent years by phosphorus-driven algae blooms that have hurt the environment and even restricted access to clean drinking water for hundreds of thousands of residents. ScottsMiracle-Gro is supporting the Ohio Environmental Council’s work to implement a bipartisan, binational goal to reduce phosphorus runoff into Lake Erie by 40%, in order to bring the Lake’s waters into a healthy balance again.

Program location: Ohio

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Since 2014, ScottsMiracle-Gro has supported independent research conducted by the Ocean Research & Conservation Association (ORCA) focusing on the Indian River Lagoon. In addition, The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation supports ORCA’s Living Lagoon School Program that engages area middle-school students in hands-on science and lagoon restoration.

Program location: Florida

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Since 2017 The ScottsMiracle-Gro Foundation has supported the Pollinator Stewardship Council in its efforts to educate the public about the importance of pollinators and to improve the environmental conditions necessary for them to thrive.

Program location: National

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ScottsMiracle-Gro first teamed up with Restore America’s Estuaries (RAE) in 2014, as part of a diverse coalition of partners to launch a coastal management and restoration study in Tampa Bay. Currently the two organizations work together to support coastal restoration work in fragile watersheds, including the Chesapeake, Tampa, and Galveston bays.

Program location: National

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ScottsMiracle-Gro and its associates are partnering on an environmental restoration program that Tampa Bay Watch has established with Tampa-area middle and high schools, called Bay Grasses in Classes. Through the program, students tend native plant nurseries on school grounds and transfer the plants they grow to designated restoration sites within the Tampa Bay estuary.

The restoration plantings help clean the Bay by filtering nutrients, while the students learn real-world environmental and agronomic education principles that will help them become the next generation of stewards for Florida’s waterways and expert backyard gardeners.

Program location: Florida

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