SAN FRANCISCO -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today awarded approximately $1 million in hazardous substance and petroleum assessment cleanup grants to Nye County, Nevada as part of a $62.5 million in EPA Brownfields Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund, and Cleanup (ARC) grants awarded nationally to over 240 recipients.
“These grants will go a long way to bring areas in southern Nevada back into productive reuse while involving community members in the process,” said Jared Blumenfeld EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “EPA is pleased to be able to fund these local projects that will help address contamination, revitalize neighborhoods and spur economic activity.”
Nye County, a member of the Rural Desert Southwest Brownfields Coalition, will use its $500,000 hazardous substance grant and $500,000 petroleum grant to provide loans and subgrants that will facilitate hazardous substance and petroleum site cleanup activities within counties that are part of the coalition. Four loans and two subgrants will be provided to coalition county members, which include Esmeralda County, Lincoln County, and White Pine County.
EPA’s ARC grants provide communities with funding necessary to assess, cleanup and redevelop contaminated properties, boost local economies and leverage jobs while protecting public health and the environment.
These Brownfields grants target under-served and economically disadvantaged neighborhoods – places where environmental cleanups and new jobs are most needed. Approximately $29.5 million are going to communities that have been impacted by plant closures. Other selected recipients include tribes and communities in 45 states across the country, and nearly half of the grantees this year are new recipients.
There are an estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated sites in the United States. More than 20,000 properties have been assessed, and more than 850 properties have been cleaned up. EPA’s Brownfields investments have also leveraged more than $19 billion in overall cleanup and redevelopment funding from public and private sources. On average $17.79 is leveraged for every EPA Brownfields grant dollar spent. These investments resulted in approximately 87,000 jobs nationwide. When Brownfields are addressed, nearby property values can increase 2-3 percent.
A 2011 pilot study indicated Brownfields site redevelopment increases location efficiency, which means that residents live closer to where they work and play reducing their commute times and greenhouse gas emissions. EPA’s preliminary research has also shown that redeveloping Brownfield sites results in an efficient reuse of existing infrastructure and decreasing instances of stormwater runoff. These projects can have a positive impact on community revitalization by leveraging jobs, producing clean energy, and providing recreation opportunities for surrounding neighborhoods.
More information on Brownfields grants by state: http://cfpub.epa.gov/bf_factsheets/
More information on EPA’s Brownfields:
Success Stories http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/success/index.htm