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EPA Announces $467,000 Investment to Clean Up Contaminated Sites in West Virginia

Release Date: 06/07/2011
Contact Information: Roy Seneca (215) 814-5567

PHILADELPHIA (June 6, 2011) -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced $467,000 in new investments that will help clean up abandoned industrial properties in West Virginia. These brownfields investments will enable three communities in the state to move forward with plans for redeveloping and revitalizing areas for economic and environmental improvement.

“Brownfields initiatives demonstrate how environmental protection and economic development work hand-in-hand,” said Shawn M. Garvin, regional administrator for EPA’s mid-Atlantic region. “Along with generating jobs, these grants will help West Virginia communities convert vacant industrial properties into assets for the community, the environment, and the economy.”

The West Virginia grants include:

    $200,000 to the Jefferson County Development Authority to support cleanup efforts at the former Shepherdstown Dump in Shepherdstown, a historic village on the Potomac River. The site is known to contain carcinogens. Cleanup work will reduce risks to human health and the environment and is expected to allow the Development Authority to move forward with plans to reuse the site as a public library. The new library is expected to create jobs and improve literacy programs for local residents.
    $200,000 to the City of Ranson in Jefferson County to support the cleanup of hazardous substances at the former Kidde Fire Fighting Foundry at 215 North Mildred Street. The vacant 5.5-acre site once operated as a brass and aluminum foundry that manufactured fire suppression equipment. The site is contaminated with heavy metals and inorganic contaminants. When the site is cleaned up, the city plans to redevelop it as Powhatan Place, an integral part of Ranson’s downtown revitalization plan.
    $67,000 to the Town of Addison, a rural community in Webster County that was once known for its extensive coal mining and timber industries. The region’s industrial past has left behind many brownfields properties, including mine-scarred lands, sawmills, and abandoned railroads. Funds will be used to help clean up a former railroad site and reduce threats posed by contaminants in soil and groundwater. The cleanup work will allow the town to move forward with a master plan to reuse the site as a campground, museum, and tourism center.
    EPA’s brownfields program encourages redevelopment of America’s estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites. Brownfields grants help to assess, clean up and redevelop abandoned, contaminated properties known as brownfields. Brownfields are sites where expansion, redevelopment, or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. Grant recipients are selected through a national competition.

    Since the beginning of the program in 1995, EPA has invested 1,895 assessment grants totaling over $447.6 million, 279 revolving loan fund grants totaling more than $273.1 million, and 752 cleanup grants totaling $140.8 million.

    Additional information on the EPA brownfields program is available at http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/ . Additional information on grant recipients is available at http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/grant_info/index.htm .