After a long, blizzard-filled winter, Earth Day was celebrated April 29 in Lidgerwood, North Dakota. USDA Rural Development delivered the latest in a number of loans and grants to help offset the cost of a $1.58 million project to provide safe drinking water to the city. Lidgerwood’s leaders first learned of arsenic in their water supply twenty-three years ago. After a number of other methods failed to solve the problem, the city eventually joined a regional rural water district. Rural Development North Dakota State Director, Jasper Schneider said the USDA is proud to partner with the city and other funding sources to make safe and reliable water a reality for its 700 citizens.
Lidgerwood Mayor Steven Oddo said they were honored to be selected as Rural Development’s Earth Day project of the year. Over 100 school children decked out in star-studded, striped bandanas gathered to plant hackberry trees donated by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. By the time the youngest students graduate, they’ll see the fruit of their labor tower over them, a natural phenomena considering the 24 inch size of the trees planted on Earth Day 2011.
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