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EPA awards $50,000 to two Colorado organizations for environmental justice efforts

Release Date: 12/12/2011
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EPA awards $50,000 to two Colorado organizations for environmental justice efforts
Two Colorado nonprofits receive funding to address air toxics and water quality

CONTACT: Lisa McClain-Vanderpool, mcclain-vanderpool@epa.gov, 303-312-6077; April Nowak, nowak.april@epa.gov, 303-312-6528

(Denver, Colo. – Dec 12, 2011) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it awarded more than $1 million in grants to 46 non-profit and tribal organizations working to address environmental justice issues nationwide. Groundwork Denver, Inc. and the Better Pueblo Environmental Justice Project are two Colorado nonprofits receiving about $25,000 each.

“Community-based action and participation in environmental decision-making are critical to building healthy and sustainable communities,” said Lisa Garcia, EPA’s senior advisor to the administrator for environmental justice. “By supporting local environmental justice projects in under-served communities, we are expanding the conversation on environmentalism and advancing environmental justice in communities across the nation.”

Groundwork Denver Inc. seeks to address human exposure to air toxics in the Globeville neighborhood in north Denver. The recipient and its partners will conduct community-wide surveys and air quality monitoring to determine what toxics are present, educate the Globeville community about air toxics and encourage self-reporting of poor air quality incidences. This information will be cross referenced with industrial emissions and wind direction data to identify potential sources of the pollution, providing critical information needed for eliminating odors and associated air toxics in the neighborhood.

The Better Pueblo Environmental Justice Project will focus on increasing awareness of Fountain Creek water quality issues in Pueblo County. The Fountain Creek watershed covers the entire Colorado Springs metropolitan area. The creek flows through low income Latino communities throughout the city of Pueblo and flows east through small towns along the Arkansas River. Better Pueblo seeks to change how people in Pueblo County understand environmental and public health matters. The project includes Pueblo East side and the rural areas of Avondale and Boone.

EPA also announced it is seeking applicants for $1 million in environmental justice small grants expected to be awarded in 2012. The grants enable non-profit organizations to conduct research, provide education, and develop solutions to local health and environmental issues in communities overburdened by pollution. The 2012 grant solicitation is now open and will close on February 29, 2012. Applicants must be incorporated non-profits or tribal organizations working to educate, empower and enable their communities to understand and address local environmental and public health issues. EPA will host three pre-application teleconference calls on December 15, 2011, January 12, 2012 & February 1, 2012 to help applicants understand the requirements.

More information on the Environmental Justice Small Grants program and a list of grantees:
http://www.epa.gov/compliance/environmentaljustice/grants/ej-smgrants.html

Environment Justice Small Grants 2012 Request for Proposals and schedule of pre-application teleconference calls:
http://1.usa.gov/utmmdh