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Workers in Alaska and Washington to receive training for environmental safety and cleanup jobs

Release Date: 06/13/2013
Contact Information: Suzanne Skadowski, EPA Public Affairs, 206-553-6689, skadowski.suzanne@epa.gov

(Seattle - June 13, 2013) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is awarding $400,000 in federal job training grants to the City of Tacoma and Zender Environmental, Alaska through the EPA Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program.

EPA’s Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program provides environmental and health and safety training and helps graduates develop a broader set of skills that improve their ability to find employment in the environmental field. Program graduates acquire training and certifications in environmental health and safety, lead and asbestos abatement, landfill management, wastewater treatment, brownfields assessment and cleanup, Superfund cleanup, leaking underground storage tank removal, recycling, and emergency response.

Zender Environmental Health and Research Group, Alaska

$200,000 grant to train 32 students, place 28 graduates in environmental jobs, and track graduates for fifteen months. The core training program includes 168 hours of instruction in 40-hour Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response; freon recovery; resource recovery and solid waste management; landfill operator; home and facility light auditing; forklift operator; site alternative treatment; leaking underground and above-ground storage tank removal; oil spill emergency response; water and soil sample collection; fuel tank inspection; and confined space entry. The training program will offer four state and five federal certifications to students. Partners include the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, Association of Village Council Presidents Housing Authority, Total ReClaim, and tribal programs throughout Alaska.

City of Tacoma, Washington

$200,000 grant to train 54 students, place 39 graduates in environmental jobs, and track graduates for one year. The core training program includes 206 hours of instruction in 40-hour Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response; OSHA construction safety; confined space entry; mold assessment and remediation; forklift-construction reach and warehouse; chemical awareness; underground storage tank leak prevention; stormwater management; and alternate treatment technologies. The program offers four supplemental training courses to graduates including OSHA disaster site worker; certified erosion and sediment control lead; asbestos worker; and lead renovation, repair, and painting. The training program will offer seven state and federal certifications with four more certifications available through supplemental training. Partners include the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department, WorkForce Central, Metropolitan Development Council, Tacoma Goodwill REACH Center, and Clover Park Technical College.

EPA’s Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program has funded training for more than 11,000 workers as of 2013. More than 8,000 trainees have obtained employment in the environmental field with an average starting hourly wage of $14.12.

More information on EPA’s environmental workforce development and job training grants: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/pilot_grants.htm

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