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EPA: $2.2 Million in Grants for Contaminated Land Cleanup, Economic Development in Tennessee

Release Date: 05/11/2009
Contact Information: Davina Marraccini, (404) 562-8293, marraccini.davina@epa.gov

[Atlanta, GA – May 11, 2009] U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson has announced the availability of an estimated $2.2 million in grants to help communities in Tennessee clean up sites known as “brownfields” which may be contaminated by hazardous chemicals or pollutants. The grants from the EPA brownfields general program funding will help revitalize former industrial and commercial sites, turning them from problem properties to productive community use.

“Cleaning and reusing contaminated properties provide the catalyst to improving the lives of residents living in or near brownfields communities,” said EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson. “A revitalized brownfields site reduces threats to human health and the environment, creates green jobs, promotes community involvement, and attracts investment in local neighborhoods.”

“Brownfields initiatives demonstrate how environmental protection and economic development work hand-in-hand,” said Stan Meiburg, EPA Acting Regional Administrator in Atlanta. “This funding will help local efforts in transforming underutilized properties into community assets while providing a boost for the economy through the creation of green jobs.”

Applicants selected to receive brownfields general program funds are:
Chattanooga - $1.0 million, Revolving Loan Fund for cleanup and a $200,000 for cleanup of the former Anchor Glass site
Hamilton County - $200,000 for the former Bell Elementary School cleanup
Knoxville - $400,000 for community wide assessment
Upper Cumberland Development District - $400,000 for community wide assessment

The grants will help to assess, cleanup 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. In addition, the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act of 2002 expanded the definition of a brownfield to include mine-scarred lands or sites contaminated by petroleum or the manufacture of illegal drugs. Grant recipients are selected through a national competition. The Brownfields Program encourages development of America's estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites.

President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 on February 17, 2009, and has directed that the Recovery Act be implemented with unprecedented transparency and accountability. To that end, the American people can see how every dollar is being invested at Recovery.gov.

More information on brownfields cleanup revolving loan fund pilots and grants and other brownfields activities under the Recovery Act: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/eparecovery/index.htm.

Additional information on the EPA Region 4 brownfields recipients and their projects is available at http://www.epa.gov/region4/waste/bf/.