Clean Ohio Program

The Clean Ohio Green Space Conservation Program is dedicated to environmental conservation including acquisition of green space and the protection and enhancement of river and stream corridors. Grant recipients agree to maintain the properties in perpetuity so that they can be enjoyed and cherished for generations to come.


Visit here for information about Clean Ohio Project Administration.

Visit here for more information about all the funding programs that OPWC offers.

In order to apply for Clean Ohio funding, you must fill out the application and attachments below and submit to the District in which the project is located. You can find your District by visiting our District Homepage. Every District has their own scoring methodology and deadlines for application submission. Once projects are submitted to the District, reviewed/scored/ranked, they are then sent to OPWC for review and project agreement release.

Download the Clean Ohio Application and Instructions below:

Clean Ohio Application Instructions

Clean Ohio Application

**View our Clean Ohio Advisories page for more information regarding program specific policies and eligibility

NOTE: Contact the appropriate NRAC or visit their page on this website to determine if there are any NRAC specific requirements or supplements to the Application.

Helpful Links for Supporting Documentation:

Beneficial use designations (for streams)

Ohio Primary Headwater Habitat Streams (for headwater streams)

Ohio Rapid Assessment Method for Wetlands (ORAM) Documents (for wetlands)

Ohio Natural Heritage Database (rare plants and animals)

Ohio Credible Data Program

The Clean Ohio Green Space Conservation Program provides grants for up to 75 percent of the estimated costs for projects that do either of the following:

Open Space – Open space acquisition and/or related development of those open spaces, including the acquisition of easements. This includes acquisition of land or rights in land for parks, forests, wetlands, natural areas that protect an endangered plant or animal population, other natural areas, and connecting corridors for natural areas. Related development projects include projects for the construction or enhancement of facilities that are necessary to make the acquired open space area accessible and useable by the general public. An application can be made for acquisition only, acquisition and related improvements, or for improvements only on properties previously acquired through Clean Ohio. Eligible improvements include trails, pedestrian bridges, observation decks, kiosks/signs, benches, trash receptacles, invasive species removal (one time), parking lots, restoration, and fencing.

Riparian Corridor – Protection and enhancement of riparian corridors or watersheds, including the protection of streams, rivers, lakes, and other bodies of water. Projects may include reforestation of land or planting of vegetation for filtration, and fee simple acquisition or acquisition of easements for providing access, or for protection and enhancement.

The Clean Ohio Greenspace Conservation Program is focused on environmental conservation. This means that projects and project components are for the preservation, protection, or restoration of the natural environment, natural ecosystems, vegetation and wildlife. Therefore, items that do not lend themselves to conservation are generally not allowable under this program. The following list serves as clarification but is not meant to be exhaustive as the very nature of the program makes it difficult to conceive all possible scenarios. If you have an eligibility question, please contact your OPWC program representative.

Structures

1)    Structures such as benches, trails and bridges which provide for Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility are permitted.

2)    Structures allowing for passive recreation such as shelter houses, restrooms, and similar facilities are permitted but cannot be part of the Clean Ohio funding or match. The property must be predominantly open space to qualify.

3)    Decorative or aesthetic features such as fountains, statues, monuments, etc. are permitted but cannot be part of the Clean Ohio funding or match.

4)    Structures that are not conducive to the nature of a conservation site for passive recreation, such as buildings for well fields, RV parks, ball diamonds, and the like are prohibited.

5)    Existing buildings can be retained for nature centers, maintenance buildings and the like but must be identified in the application and approved by the appropriate district NRAC.

6)    Improvements to existing buildings or reasonable additions to buildings are allowed for nature centers, maintenance buildings and the like, contingent upon identification and approval by the appropriate district NRAC, but cannot be included as part of the Clean Ohio funding or match. The property must be predominantly open space to qualify.

7)    The acquisition and/or demolition of buildings as part of a Clean Ohio project is at the discretion of each NRAC.

8)    Wind turbines are prohibited.

 

  • Aesthetic landscaping and decorative items are not permitted to be part of the Clean Ohio funding or match.
  • Costs which are not permitted for Clean Ohio funding or match include administrative costs, monitoring costs, maintenance items, seller paid items, taxes, etc.
  • No new oil and gas leases are permitted once the NRAC has approved the application.
  • Any future modification or breach of the recorded deed restrictions or conservation easement that occur once the Project Agreement has been signed and without the advanced written approval of the OPWC Director shall result in the imposition of liquidated damages on the entity responsible for the breach equal to twice the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund monies disbursed for the project, plus compounded interest at 6% per annum.

  • Wetland restoration is permitted. Wetland creation including vernal pools and any other forms of hydromodification are prohibited. In addition, Clean Ohio funds cannot be used for a wetland mitigation bank.
  • No agricultural use except as described in the on-line OPWC Clean Ohio Advisory Document. All post acquisition activities must be concluded within a two-year period from the date of acquisition unless a formal extension has been approved by OPWC.

See a full list of all of our previously funded Clean Ohio projects HERE.