Thursday, May 31, 2012
Astoria, Oregon, one of nine cities nationally to share $3.8 million in new EPA Brownfields redevelopment funding
Susan Morales, EPA/Seattle 206-553-7299, firstname.lastname@example.org
Mark MacIntyre, EPA/Seattle 206-553-7302, email@example.com
(Seattle - May 31, 2011) – Nine communities across America will share $3.8 million in new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) funding to help cleanup and redevelop of local contaminated properties. The new pilot “Multi-Purpose” grants, funded by EPA’s Brownfields program, will help recipients conduct assessments and cleanups, eliminating delays.
Here in the Pacific Northwest, EPA has selected the City of Astoria for a Brownfields multi-purpose pilot grant. Hazardous substances grant funds will be used to assess and clean up the Heritage Square site located at 1153 Duane Street. Once the site of an auto repair shop, a dry cleaner and later a printer, the Duane Street location will be redeveloped as an outdoor community gathering place with an amphitheater, market plaza, boardwalk and covered pavilions.
EPA believes that by investing in local redevelopment, communities can help clean up America’s land, boost local economies and create jobs while protecting public health.
A Nod to Local Chinese History
A historic dimension to the Astoria redevelopment project is the Garden of Surging Waves, a non-traditional Chinese Garden that will be a tribute to Astoria's Chinese heritage. Astoria has a rich and diverse social history, populated with a variety of ethnic groups, many of which are honored elsewhere in the community. But until now, Astoria’s early Chinese history has remained obscure. When fishing and fish canneries were two of Astoria’s primary industries, Chinese men were a key part of the cannery workforce.
EPA’s Brownfields Program
There are an estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites in America. EPA’s Brownfields program targets these sites to encourage redevelopment, and help provide the opportunity for productive community use of contaminated properties. Brownfields grants target under-served and low income neighborhoods – places where environmental cleanups and new jobs are most needed.
More information on EPA’s Brownfields program: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/
EPA News Release (Region 7): City of Perry, Iowa, to Receive $400,000 for Assessment and Cleanup of Hazardous Substances at Former Rail Yard
City of Perry, Iowa, to Receive $400,000 for Assessment and Cleanup of Hazardous Substances at Former Rail Yard
Contact Information: Belinda Young, (913) 551-7463, firstname.lastname@example.org
(Kansas City, Kan., May 31, 2012) - The City of Perry, Iowa, has been selected to receive $400,000 in EPA brownfields funding to assess and clean up hazardous substances at the former Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Rail Yard in the city’s Spring Valley Township.
The funding is being awarded through an EPA Brownfields Multi-purpose Pilot Grant, which provides funding for site assessment and cleanup in a single grant. Perry was selected from nine communities across the country in need of redevelopment.
“The Brownfields Program helps Region 7 communities clean up local properties for future use," said Region 7 Administrator Karl Brooks.
There are an estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites in America. EPA’s Brownfields Program targets these sites to encourage redevelopment, and help to provide the opportunity for productive community use.
The 101-acre former Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Rail Yard is an abandoned property, contaminated with PCBs, herbicides, heavy metals, and inorganic contaminants. Assessment grant funds will be used to conduct in-depth sampling activities to identify the types and concentrations of contaminants. These funds will also be used to develop cleanup plans, and engage the community and other stakeholders with the project.
Cleanup funds will be used to manage the overall planning and coordination of the project, clean up the site, and prepare a project completion report, which will summarize the cleanup activities performed at the site. The property is expected to be redeveloped as a park and trailhead. It may also be used as a site for the generation of renewable energy.
EPA’s Brownfields Program empowers states, communities, and other stakeholders to work together to prevent, assess, safely clean up, and sustainable reuse brownfields. A brownfields site is real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.
In 2002, the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act was passed to help states and communities around the country clean up and revitalize brownfields sites. Under this law, EPA provides financial assistance to eligible applicants to assess and clean up brownfields sites.
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Compliance and Enforcement News Release (HQ): Plastics Producer SABIC Agrees to Reduce Harmful Air Pollution from Leaking Equipment to Resolve Clean Air Act Violations in Indiana and Alabama
Atlanta Will Get More Time to Complete Sewer Upgrades
City, state and federal government reach proposed agreement to extend the deadline to 2027
Contact Information: Davina Marraccini, (404) 562-8293, email@example.com
(ATLANTA – May 31, 2012) The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) today proposed an amendment to a 1999 Consent Decree that would give the City of Atlanta additional time to complete the limited remaining repairs needed to eliminate sanitary sewer overflows and ensure Clean Water Act compliance. The untreated sewage from these overflows can contaminate rivers and streams, causing serious water quality problems. It can also back-up into residences and businesses, causing property damage and threatening public health.
Atlanta has already completed the majority of the work required under the 1999 Consent Decree to address water quality violations, reducing sanitary sewer overflows by an estimated 97 percent since 2004 at a cost of $1.5 billion. Today’s proposal would extend the deadline to complete the estimated $445 million in remaining work from July 1, 2014 to July 1, 2027. The proposed extension would reduce the financial burden on Atlanta ratepayers who are already paying some of the highest rates in the country, and allow the City to simultaneously address competing priorities to improve its drinking water system.
Atlanta has also completed all work required under a 1998 Consent Decree to address combined sewer overflows, which discharge excess wastewater directly into waterways during wet weather events. This work was completed by the 2009 deadline at a cost of an additional $760 million, and included separating portions of the sewer system, building large underground tunnels to capture stormwater for treatment, and disinfecting combined sewer overflows. As part of the 1998 Consent Decree, Atlanta also successfully implemented a $25 million Supplemental Environmental Project to acquire and preserve greenway areas surrounding waterways in metro Atlanta.
The proposed modification to the 1999 Consent Decree will be lodged with the U.S. District Court in Atlanta and is subject to a 30-day public comment period. After considering and responding to comments received, the United States will determine whether to proceed with the proposed extension and, if so, move to enter it with the Court. Court approval is required before any modification would be effective.
More about the 1999 consent decree:
More information about EPA’s national enforcement initiative: http://www.epa.gov/compliance/data/planning/initiatives/2011sewagestormwater.html
News Release: EPA Announces $650,000 Grant to Clean Up Contaminated Sites in Southeast Michigan; State to Receive a Total $3.2 Million in Grants and Loans
CONTACT: Francisco Arcaute, 312-886-7613, firstname.lastname@example.org
Since 2005, Downriver also has used $10 million from EPA’s brownfield revolving loan fund program for at least 15 more projects, leveraging more than $160 million in redevelopment.
“The City of Dearborn has benefitted from the EPA’s funding to the Downriver Community Conference’s Brownfield Consortium in the past through the development of the successful Dearborn Town Center,” said Mayor John B. O’Reilly, Jr. “In these difficult budget times, additional resources from the EPA for our area are welcome.”
See a list of all awarded brownfield grants by state: http://cfpub.epa.gov/bf_factsheets/
MEDIA CONTACT: Peter Cassell, 312-886-6234, email@example.com
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05/31/2012 09:30 AM EDT
By Elizabeth Erwin This past December, I had the opportunity to attend the annual Society for Risk Analysis (SRA) meeting in Charleston, SC. One of my responsibilities was to cover a symposium on EPA's Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) chaired by Becki Clark, Acting Director of my EPA office, the National Center for Environmental Assessment [...]