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Louisiana Organization Awarded EPA Environmental Justice Grant

Release Date: 03/24/2009
Contact Information: Dave Bary or Anthony Suttice at 214-665-2200 or r6press@epa.gov

Group expects to improve public awareness on unauthorized discharges from refineries

(Dallas, Texas – March 24, 2009) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded the Louisiana Bucket Brigade of New Orleans, Louisiana, $20,000 as part of the EPA Environmental Justice Small Grants Program. The Louisiana Bucket Brigade will implement a project to increase community outreach and education on unauthorized discharges to the air and water from Louisiana refineries. The goals for this project include researching incident reports from Louisiana refiners from 2005 through 2008, analyzing data for information on emission and public health, establishing a community outreach forum to review monthly incident data and providing opportunities to share findings with neighboring refineries. This project will increase the community’s understanding of environmental and health impacts associated with unauthorized discharges.

The EPA Environmental Justice Small Grants Program awards community-based organizations with funding for projects in low-income communities on environmental and public health issues such as exposure to toxins, farm worker pesticide protection, fish consumption, indoor air quality, drinking water contamination, and pollution from shipping ports. Nationally, EPA awarded $800,000 in local grants for environmental improvements.

Financial assistance under the Environmental Justice Small Grants Program is available to all non-profit organizations designated by the IRS or recognized by the state, territory, commonwealth or tribe in which it is located. The funding is to help affected communities develop strategic solutions to their environmental justice issues and to achieve community health and sustainability.

Since 1994, EPA has provided more than $32 million to an estimated 1,100 community-based organizations that are committed to protect human health and the environment.

Additional information on environmental justice grants is available at http://www.epa.gov/compliance/environmentaljustice/grants/ej-smgrants.html

More about activities in EPA Region 6: http://www.epa.gov/region6

EPA audio file is available at http://www.epa.gov/region6/6xa/podcast/mar2009.html

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