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EPA: $1.49 Million in grants for contaminated land cleanup, economic development in Indiana

Release Date: 05/08/2009
Contact Information: Mick Hans, 312-353-5050, hans.mick@epa.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. 09-OPA078

(Chicago – May 8, 2009) U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson announced today the availability of an estimated $1.49 million in grants to help communities in Indiana 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 provides 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.”

“Providing these grants to Indiana communities is an important step forward for both the environment and local economies,” said Bharat Mathur, acting regional administrator.

Applicants selected to receive brownfields general program funds are:

Elkhart County (2), a $200,000 hazardous substances assessment grant to update the county’s brownfields inventory and conduct about 20 site assessments, and a $200,000 assessment grant for properties with potential petroleum contamination.

Elkhart, $200,000 hazardous substances assessment grant to inventory brownfields and conduct at least 10 site assessments.

West Central Indiana Economic Development District Inc., $894,000 grant to assess hazardous substances and petroleum contamination by inventorying brownfields and conducting more than 35 site assessments.

The grants will 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. 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.

Information on the EPA Region 5 brownfields recipients and their projects is available at http://www.epa.gov/r5brownfields/.

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