The state of Illinois has announced $1.6 million for more than two dozen environmental and education projects aimed at helping to conserve the Lake Michigan shoreline.
The projects will be funded through the Illinois Coastal Management Program. It was formed in 2012 to help protect Illinois' 63-mile Lake Michigan shoreline. The coastal program's grants are federally funded.
Among the 26 projects receiving money is a coastal signage and lecture series at Loyola University Chicago. Several programs are directed at school children to help them understand the importance of coastal ecology.
The director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Marc Miller, says the projects will not only help protect and restore critical habitat; he says they'll also help educate the next generation of conservationists.