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EPA Presents ADEM with $200,000 for Community Revitalization

Release Date: 05/14/2010
Contact Information: Dawn Harris-Young, (404) 562-8421, harris-young.dawn@epa.gov

(ATLANTA – May 14, 2010) Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) presented the Alabama
Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) with a $200,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant. The Grant will be used by ADEM to conduct assessments at petroleum brownfields sites where the presence of underground storage tanks may have caused environmental contamination, making the sites unsuitable for redevelopment. Funds will also be used to conduct community outreach activities.

“The EPA brownfields grant will help revitalize the communities through environmental and economic development,” said EPA Acting Regional Administrator Stan Meiburg. “These assessments can lead to projects that benefit communities, produce jobs and clean up the environment.”

The study area is along U.S. Highway 80 between Montgomery and Uniontown, and includes the entire Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail. This area is a rural corridor with an agricultural heritage. A preliminary inventory has identified 36 industrial and 62 commercial sites, as well as 54 service stations immediately adjacent to U.S. 80. ADEM estimates there are 225 registered underground storage tank sites in the area. Brownfield assessments are expected to help clarify environmental concerns, which is the first step toward site cleanup and eventual reuse.

Since 2009, ADEM and EPA have been working closely with local communities and citizens living along and in the vicinity of the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Voting Rights Trail to help create a vision for revitalization that is consistent with national historic site goals. The Trail runs through Dallas, Lowndes, and Montgomery Counties and is a pivotal civil rights location that commemorates events, people, and the route of the 1965 Voting Rights March.

The Brownfields Program encourages cleanup and redevelopment of America’s estimated 450,000 brownfields sites. Since the beginning of the Brownfields Program, EPA has awarded 1449 assessment grants totaling over $337.3 million, 242 revolving loan fund grants totaling over $233.4 million, and 534 cleanup grants totaling $93.3 million.

Information on EPA’s Brownfields Program, including brownfields activities under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, is available at:
http://www.epa.gov/brownfields.