SAN FRANCISCO -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that Monterey County will be one of 171 communities nationwide receiving brownfields funding to clean and redevelop contaminated properties, boost local economies and leverage jobs while protecting public health and the environment.
The FY14 Brownfields Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund, and Cleanup (ARC) grants will give communities and businesses a chance to return economic stability to under-served and economically disadvantaged neighborhoods through the assessment and clean-up of abandoned industrial and commercial properties, places where environmental cleanups and new jobs are most needed.
“Brownfields funding allows communities to innovate new ways to retrofit formerly polluted, unused sites for sustainable new uses,” Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “This funding will not only clean up contaminated property, but engage the community in redeveloping the property for the public’s benefit.”
The grant to the County will be used to clean up the former San Lucas Branch Library on Teresa Street in San Lucas. The site, used from the 1940s until 2010 as a library, then as office space for the San Lucas County Water District, is currently vacant and contaminated with organic and inorganic contaminants. Once cleaned up, the site will once again be developed as a library and built to the LEED Silver green building standard.
A total of approximately $23.5 million is going to communities that have been impacted by plant closures. Other selected recipients include tribes and communities in 44 states across the country; and at least 50 of the grants are going to Housing and Urban Development – Department of Transportation – Environmental Protection Agency grant recipient communities.
Since the inception of the EPA’s Brownfields program in 1995, cumulative brownfield program investments have leveraged more than $21 billion from a variety of public and private sources for cleanup and redevelopment activities. This equates to an average of $17.79 leveraged per EPA brownfield dollar expended. These investments have resulted in approximately 93,000 jobs nationwide. These projects demonstrate the positive impact a small investment of federal brownfields funding can have on community revitalization through leveraging jobs, producing clean energy, and providing recreation opportunities for surrounding neighborhoods. EPA’s Brownfields Program empowers states, communities, and other stakeholders to work together to prevent, assess, safely clean up, and sustainably reuse brownfields sites.
More information on brownfields grants by state: http://cfpub.epa.gov/bf_factsheets/
More information on EPA’s brownfields: