BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has dedicated $40 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to restoring the Chesapeake Bay, part of a five-year, $238 million plan to clean up the 64,000-square-mile watershed, federal officials announced.

A total of $25 million will go to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Chesapeake Stewardship Fund, including $15 million to a grant program for community groups that protect and restore natural resources and $10 million to regional partnerships dedicated to Bay clean-up.

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The remaining $15 million will be distributed to the six watershed states and the District of Columbia, with emphasis on working with farms to protect local rivers and streams that flow into the Bay.

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Pennsylvania will receive $5.59 million; Maryland, $3.21 million; Virginia, $3.14 million; New York, $1.28 million; Delaware, $750,000; West Virginia, $500,000; and Washington, D.C., $500,000.

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“The latest federal investments in the Chesapeake Bay Program, which come through the bipartisan infrastructure law, provide an historic opportunity to advance considerably the partnership, particularly with on-the-ground projects to support stream and shoreline restoration and improve stormwater and agricultural management,” said U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin. “This is particularly important as we confront increasing pressures on our watershed from climate change such as extreme weather events,”

CBS Baltimore Staff