Wednesday, May 6, 2020

EPA Selects 8 PA Projects To Receive $3.7 Million For Brownfields Cleanup, Assessment

On May 6, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced eight Pennsylvania communities have been selected to receive a total of $3.7 million to assess and clean up contaminated properties under the agency’s Brownfields program.
“These grants will help communities in need transform contaminated sites into community assets that not only create jobs and jumpstart economic development but also improve public health and the environment,” said EPA Regional Administrator Cosmo Servidio. “These funds are going to areas that need them the most. Several of the selected recipients are receiving Brownfields grants for the first time or targeted to areas within Opportunity Zones.”
The Pennsylvania Brownfields Grant recipients are:
-- Beaver County, PA, Assessment Grant - $600,000: Assessment activities will focus on the City of Beaver Falls, and the Boroughs of Midland, Monaca and Rochester. Priority sites in these communities are largely former steel factory sites and other blighted and polluted industrial spaces. The target areas of Beaver Falls and Midland contain Qualified Opportunity Zones
-- Clearfield County Economic Development Corporation, PA, Cleanup Grant - $500,000: Grant funds will be used to clean up the Former Howes Leather site in Curwensville. The site operated as a tannery from the early 1900s until 2004 and is currently vacant. The site is contaminated with heavy metals co-mingled with petroleum products from two underground storage tanks that were removed in 1993.
-- Earth Conservancy, Hanover Township, PA, Cleanup Grant - $500,000: Grant funds will be used to clean up Segment F of the Espy Run in Hanover Township. The 2.4-mile Espy Run flows through land that had been used for anthracite mining.
-- Greenville, PA, Assessment Grant - $600,000: Community-wide grant funds will be used to inventory and prioritize sites and conduct environmental site assessments. Grant funds also will be used to develop five cleanup plans and support reuse planning. Assessment activities will focus on the Greenville Borough and the adjacent Townships of Delaware, Hempfield and Pymatuning.
-- Johnstown, PA Assessment Grant - $600,000: Grant funds will be used to select priority sites and conduct 19 environmental site assessments. Grant funds also will be used to develop three cleanup plans, develop an area-wide plan for the Cambria Iron/Center for Metal Arts site. Assessment activities will focus on 11 former steel and industrial sites within Johnstown and Cambria County, all of which are located in Qualified Opportunity Zones
-- Montgomery County Redevelopment Authority, Assessment Grant - $300,000: Assessment activities will focus on two areas — the Keystone Employment and Economic Plan (KEEP) Project Site and the Town Core Sites area — within the Borough of Pottstown, which has three Qualified Opportunity Zones. The 255-acre KEEP Project Site consists of 13 abandoned and underutilized commercial and industrial properties. The Town Core Sites area also includes multiple abandoned, vacant or underutilized parcels located near the Schuylkill River.
-- Oil Region Alliance of Business, Industry and Tourism, Emlenton, Parker, and Foxburg, PA, Assessment Grant - $300,000: Assessment activities will target the Towns of Emlenton, Parker and Foxburg. Priority sites include the Quaker State Refinery, the Former Fuchs Lubricants Facility, the Shoup Trucking Yard, and the Parkers Landing Outfitter Property.
-- Philadelphia Authority for Industrial Development, Assessment Grant - $300,000: Assessment activities will focus on the 3,700-acre Lower Schuylkill district in south and southwest Philadelphia, which has experienced several manufacturing closures and comprises 68 percent of the city’s vacant and underutilized industrial land. This district is also home to
Nationwide, 151 communities are selected to receive grant awards totaling over $65.6 million. in EPA brownfields funding through the Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund and Cleanup Grant Programs. 
These funds will aid under-served and economically disadvantaged communities, including neighborhoods located in Opportunity Zones, in assessing and cleaning up abandoned industrial and commercial properties. 
An Opportunity Zone is an economically distressed community where new investment, under certain conditions, may be eligible for preferential tax treatment.
Grants awarded by EPA’s Brownfields Program provide communities across the country with an opportunity to transform contaminated sites into community assets that attract jobs and achieve broader economic development outcomes, while taking advantage of existing infrastructure. 
For more on the brownfields grants, visit EPA’s Brownfields Grant Program webpage.
Information about the Pennsylvania brownfields program is available on DEP’s Brownfields Redevelopment webpage.
[Posted: May 6, 2020]  PA Environment Digest

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