US EPA Brownfields Grant Award Announcements
In central Virginia where I live, spring brings with it a burst of color in my backyard garden, a bird’s nest with hatchlings on my front door wreath, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) Brownfields Grant Award announcements. On May 12, 2022, US EPA issued a news release announcing this year’s brownfields grant awardees. US EPA is awarding $254.5 million in Brownfields Cleanup, Assessment and Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) Grants to 265 communities. Environmental Standards played a part by helping two of its clients apply for and receive funding. A Virginia municipality was awarded $500K in Assessment Grant funding. In addition, a redevelopment authority client in Pennsylvania was awarded $1M in supplemental RLF Grant funding.
As a member of Environmental Standards’ Brownfields Team, I am responsible for US EPA brownfields grant writing. That means last fall, I was doggedly working with economic development partners and the other members of Environmental Standards’ Brownfields Team to put together the most compelling case for a brownfields grant prospect. The research involves hours of reading, visiting sites, and meeting with interested stakeholders. Working with economic development champions and utilizing brownfields monies to make a meaningful difference in communities is a tremendous privilege. To play a small part in implementing positive change for an underprivileged, overburdened community is the kind of good work I feel fortunate to be a part of.
Quote from US EPA’s news release: “With today’s announcement, we’re turning blight into might for communities across America,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “EPA’s Brownfields Program breathes new life into communities by helping to turn contaminated and potentially dangerous sites into productive economic contributors. Thanks to President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we are significantly ramping up our investments in communities, with the bulk of our funding going to places that have been overburdened and underserved for far too long.”
In a few months, US EPA will release its FY22 Brownfields Grant Application guidelines. If you are an economic development champion and want to help your community benefit from brownfields funding, there are a number of actions you can take now in preparation. To start:
- Register on grants.gov
- Have an active DUNS number
- Have an active System for Award Management (SAM) account with sam.gov
There are many other early steps you can take, and US EPA offers Brownfields training opportunities. If you’re looking for brownfields program support or want to learn more about state and federal brownfields funding, please give me or anyone on our Brownfields Team a call. We would like to help as many communities as possible to leverage brownfields funding to benefit some of the most vulnerable amongst us; those who have been overlooked in the past.