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EPA Announces $55 Million for Contaminated Land Clean Up and Local Job Creation

Release Date: 08/04/2009
Contact Information: Enesta Jones, jones.enesta@epa.gov, 202-564-7873, 202-564-4355

WASHINGTON - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson announced today that $55 million in supplemental funding is being awarded for cleanup efforts at contaminated sites known as brownfields. The funds provide revolving loans and subgrants to help communities carry out cleanup activities, redevelopment projects, and create jobs for people living near brownfields sites. Of the $55 million grant, $42 million is funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and $13 million is funded through the EPA Brownfields funding program.

“These recovery act investments will help our communities create good jobs for local workers, and clean up development sites for even more long-term economic opportunities,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. “By protecting human health and the environment, we’re building a new foundation for prosperity. EPA is providing solutions in these challenging economic times, and making clear that we don’t have to choose between a growing economy and a green environment.”

Revolving loan funds are generally used to provide low or no interest loans for brownfields cleanups. Communities representing 55 state or local governments are receiving supplemental funding. In all, 42 eligible grantees will receive supplemental funding under the Recovery Act, and 18 under the EPA Brownfields general program funding. Grantees selected for recovery act supplemental funds demonstrated:

an ability to deliver programmatic results by making at least one loan or subgrant and have effectively utilized existing loan funds;

shovel-ready projects that will expeditiously result in job creation; and

an ability to track and measure their progress in creating the jobs associated with loans or subgrants.

EPA will monitor the progress of grant recipients to ensure the funds are spent productively and efficiently.

The Brownfields Program encourages redevelopment of America’s estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites. Since the beginning of the Brownfields Program, revolving loan fund grants recipients have executed 146 loans and awarded 41 subgrants to support brownfields cleanup totaling more than $76.8 million. The loan funds have leveraged more than $1.8 billion in public and private cleanup and redevelopment investment and enabled the leveraging of 3,285 jobs in cleanup, construction and redevelopment.

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 EPA brownfields activities under the recovery act: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/eparecovery/index.htm