Brownfield Grants award $1.2 million to rural counties
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Wednesday the Northern Nevada Development Authority and Churchill 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 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,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “This funding will not only protect the environment and public health, but foster new job growth opportunities for rural communities in Nye, Churchill and Lyon counties.”
EPA has selected the Northern Nevada Development Authority for $600,000 in Brownfields assessment funding. The project will target Main Street and highway commercial redevelopment opportunities along targeted transportation corridors in this rural part of Nevada. Nye County is also receiving $600,000 for cleanup planning, area-wide planning and community outreach. The project will focus on sites for community open space, Main Street and commercial redevelopment, and renewable energy production.
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.