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Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE)

Community Profiles 2005

Level I

Level II

Level I

Pacoima Beautiful

Final Report (PDF) (16pp, 213k)

Pacoima Beautiful
Pacoima, California
EPA Region 9

Pacoima Beautiful is the recipient of a Level I CARE cooperative agreement in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles. Pacoima Beautiful will use CARE funding to create a broad-based community group that understands the toxic risks in the community and sets priorities for action. Located in the northern region of the San Fernando Valley in California, Pacoima City has a population that is 85 percent Latino, of which 46 percent live in poverty. Pacoima Beautiful outlined a work plan with the three key goals: (1) to identify and understand at least four sources of toxics in the community by meeting with community stakeholders and analyzing data; (2) to establish at least ten priorities to reduce toxic risks by setting priorities that will lead to effective action over the long term; and (3) to develop effective collaborative problem solving partnerships of at least seven stakeholder groups. Pacoima Beautiful has recently recognized the relationship between toxics and health risks in the community. The city has become concerned with its proximity to a range of toxic sources, including multiple industrial facilities and the confluence of multiple transportation corridors. Other environmental health concerns emanate from polluting small businesses that do not have proper permits, many houses that were built prior to 1978 and used lead-based paint, and abandoned lots that have become dumping grounds for trash and hazardous waste.

Prospective CARE Partners: The Department of Urban Studies and Planning at the California State University Northridge (CSUN); the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health at CSUN; the City of Los Angeles Environmental Affairs Department; Valley Care Community Consortium (VCCC); the County of Los Angeles Department of Health Services; the Northeast Valley Health Corporation; Los Angeles County Neighborhood Legal Services.

See also Pacoima Beautiful's Level II CARE award.

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DeKalb County Health Dept

Final Report (PDF) (19pp, 119k)

DeKalb County Health Department
Decatur, Georgia
EPA Region 4

The DeKalb County Health Department is the recipient of this Level I CARE cooperative agreement. This project is the only CARE project in a suburban setting and they will be setting up three different partnerships in different parts of the county. The County Health Department will use CARE funding to protect the community from public and environmental health threats through activities such as hazardous risk assessments, indoor air quality education, health education, workshops, and scrap tire education and enforcement programs.

Common concerns that citizens have expressed relate to rodent and mosquito control, indoor air quality, radon and lead incidences, water pollution, odor and noise nuisances, and hazardous waste complaints. The most pressing concern for communities, however, is the impacts of living near a landfill. For this reason, County officials and the media have started to give environmental health issues greater attention.

The DeKalb County Health Department proposes to implement the CARE program in five phases, which correspond to its five goals: (1) formation of community-based collaborations; (2) surveying coalition participants; (3) developing a comprehensive understanding of toxic risks; (4) identify environmental toxic risks; and (5) prioritizing toxic risks.

Prospective CARE Partners: Healthy DeKalb; Keep DeKalb Beautiful; and the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta. Other resources in the Atlanta region that may assist with educational outreach include the Center for Disease Control (CDC), Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

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RCAP Solutions, Inc.

Final Report (PDF) (28pp, 1.7 MB)

RCAP (Resources for Communities and People) Solutions, Inc.
Claremont, New Hampshire
EPA Region 1

RCAP Solutions, Inc (RCAP) is the recipient of a Level I CARE cooperative agreement for a project in Sullivan County, New Hampshire. This is the only project with a major focus on waste disposal issues. RCAP will use CARE funding to develop long-term voluntary solutions to multiple solid waste issues including reduction, recycling and composting; to develop a household hazard waste/toxics management system plan; to educate businesses, institutions, and the community on voluntary solutions that include pollution prevention evaluations; and to implement voluntary pilot programs and solutions to reduce multi-media toxic risks. Sullivan County is a rural county and one of the lower income regions in New Hampshire.

RCAP hopes to introduce a new paradigm in multi-media solid waste management. RCAP proposes to reduce the volume of waste and the resultant pollution through education, reuse, recovery, recycling, compositing, and small business incubation. RCAP would like to promote the concept of zero waste generation through educational activities geared toward reducing waste from households, industry, and government. A bi-state regional agreement to deliver waste to the Sullivan County incinerator expires in July 2007, requiring residents to start planning now to prepare for an integrated comprehensive resource management plan.

Prospective CARE Partners: The Sullivan County Solid Waste Alternatives Committee, Sullivan County Board of Commissioners, Northeast Resource Recovery Association, Antioch New England Institute, and the NH Department of Environmental Services.

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NW NM Council of Govts

Final Report (PDF) (29pp, 174k)

The Northwest New Mexico Council of Governments
Gallup, New Mexico
EPA Region 6

The Northwest New Mexico Council of Governments (NWNMCOG) is the recipient of a Level I CARE cooperative agreement. The NWNMCOG covers a largely rural area with 220,000 people in 3 counties. This proposal focuses on a wide range of environmental issues that will be addressed in collaboration with Native American tribes, municipalities, small towns, and widely disbursed rural settlements in the region. The NWNMCOG will use CARE funding to address the contamination of soil, air, and water primarily caused by industrial processes such as uranium mining, oil and gas development, and power plant emissions. It will focus on environmental health concerns that have been identified, and additional concerns that will be identified in the CARE process. Five top concerns that have been identified in one of the counties are: 1) the lack of adequate solid waste disposal systems, which leads to dumping in arroyos and other areas, 2) a lack of good quality water, as well as inappropriate wastewater disposal, 3) environmental justice, 4) poor air quality caused by refinery and power plant emissions and windblown dust, and 5) concern about unfenced livestock not being cared for properly.

Prospective CARE Partners: The New Mexico Environment Department (the Office of the Secretary and District 5); the McKinley Community Health Alliance; the Northwest New Mexico Community Development Corporation; the Cibola Health Council; the Four Corners Ozone Task Force; the San Juan Citizens Alliance; the Durango-McKinley Paper Company; the Pueblo of Zuni; Connections, Inc.; the McKinley Soil and Water Conservation District; Work in Beauty, Inc.

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Oneida Co Health Dept

Oneida County Health Department
Utica, New York
EPA Region 2

The Oneida County Health Department is the recipient of a Level I CARE cooperative agreement. This project has the largest farm community of any CARE cooperative agreement and will raise agricultural issues. Additional issues include twenty-seven inactive waste disposal sites, urban issues from the small cities of Rome and Utica, and a Federal Facilities Agreement at the closed Griffiss Air Force Base. The Health Department will use CARE funding to identify populations at risk of exposure to environmental toxics, and prioritize environmental risk-reduction tactics for local action. The CARE cooperative agreement will assist Oneida County's implementation of the Protocol for Assessing Community Excellence in Environmental Health (PACE EH). This program seeks to identify and rank local environmental health issues, and develop an action plan to address the risks involved. It further intends to educate the public on environmental health issues by involving community members in decision-making and priority setting processes.

In the recent 2005 County's Health Assessment Report, County residents identified environmental health as a primary concern for many reasons. First, increased vehicular traffic and industrial emissions have contributed to increasing PM2.5 levels. Second, there are twenty-seven inactive waste disposal sites that are known to exist throughout the county with identified contaminants including heavy metals, waste solvents, PCBs, and PAHs. Third, numerous illegal dumpsites exist in the County, many of which many contain hazardous waste. Fourth, environmental health has become a primary concern for residents is that pesticide application practices combined with (CAFO) concentrated animal feeding operations contribute to increasing non-point pollution. Fifth, many of the community's sewage systems are operating with antiquated infrastructures and are subject to leaking and system failures.

Prospective CARE Partners: The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; the School of Public Health at the University at Albany; the New York Department of Health; the College of Environmental Science and Forestry at the State University of New York; the Community Environmental Health Assessment (CEHA) Program; the Mid-York Library System; the Mohawk Valley Chamber of Commerce; the Emmaus House; the Onondaga County Water Authority; the Youth Empowerment Project, Inc.; the Neighborhood Center, Inc.; Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson, Inc.; the Oneida County Emergency Management Office; the Office of the Sheriff of Oneida County; the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Oneida County; the Resource Center for Independent Living (RCIL); the Learning Disability Association of the Mohawk Valley (LDAMV); the Mohawk Valley Perinatal Network, Inc.; the HomeOwnership Center; the Catholic Charities of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Syracuse; the Oneida-Herkimer-Madison Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES); the Stevens-Swan Humane Society of Oneida County, Inc.; the Utica Chapter of the American Red Cross; the Oneida-Herkimer Solid Waste Authority; the Oneida County Historical Society; the Upstate Cerebral Palsy; the Utica Safe Schools Healthy Students Partnership, Inc.; Kids Against Pollution; the School of Nursing and Health Systems at the State University of New York Institute of Technology (SUNYIT); the Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees; Utica College; the Legal Aid Society of Mid-New York, Inc.; the Department of Civil Engineering Technology at SUNYIT; the Central New York Regional Planning and Development Board.

Visit this community’s CARE web page. Exit EPA disclaimer

Read a case study on facilitation assistance provided to this project (PDF) (4pp, 1.0 MB) by EPA’s Conflict Prevention and Resolution Center.

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Philadelphia Clean Air Council

Final Report (PDF) (79pp, 1.2 MB)

The Philadelphia Clean Air Council
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
EPA Region 3

On behalf of the Philadelphia Diesel Difference, the Philadelphia Clean Air Council is the recipient of a Level I CARE cooperative agreement. The Philadelphia Clean Air Council is a local NGO that will use CARE funding to address the pollution that emanates from the Philadelphia Port System. It will develop an Environmental Management System (EMS) that will enable Philadelphia's ports to reduce its environmental impacts and increase its operating efficiency. The Port System will involve port stakeholders, including operators, land-owners, community members, and environmentalists, in a collaborative process to implement environmentally sustainable business practices.

CARE funding will be used to research port emissions and implement an action plan that addresses air pollution, water pollution, and land-use issues. Air pollution along ports is a health risk to port workers and people living in adjacent neighborhoods. Diesel exhaust from cargo ships increases cancer risks and incidences of asthma. Proposed measures to reduce the air pollution include the replacing old equipment with cleaner equipment; operating equipment on cleaner fuel; creating incentive programs to encourage fleet modernization; and devising anti-idling strategies. Water pollution is also common along ports. The Clean Air Council plans to prepare a stormwater prevention plan and provide guidance and incentives to reduce wastewater emissions from vehicles entering the facility. Land-use is a third issue that CARE funding expects to address. The Clean Air Council advocates careful planning to avoid sprawling onto greenspace or inappropriate sites.

Prospective CARE Partners: The Philadelphia Diesel Difference; City of Philadelphia; American Lung Association of Pennsylvania; Amtrak, Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future (Penn Future); Department of Public Health, City of Philadelphia, Office of Fleet Management, City of Pennsylvania; Cummins Power Systems, Inc.; Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission; The Energy Cooperative; Krapf Bus Company; National School Transportation Association; Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection; Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission; Rentar Environmental Solutions, Inc.; School District of Philadelphia; Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority; Sprague Energy; Ultraco; Wissahickon School District; the Port Richmond Community Group; the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection; the Philadelphia Water Department.

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Intl District Housing Alliance

Final Report (PDF) (41pp, 1.5 MB)

International District Housing Alliance
Seattle, Washington
EPA Region 10

The International District Housing Alliance (IDHA) is the recipient of a Level I CARE cooperative agreement. This cooperative agreement provides the opportunity to demonstrate the CARE program in an Asian and Pacific Islander community. The IDHA will use CARE funding to address the environmental problems of economically disadvantaged neighborhoods in the International District, located in Seattle, Washington. More than half of the residents in this region are Asian and Pacific Islander (API), many who have limited English language skills. This community has experienced high incidences of health disparities and environmental injustices. Among its environmental concerns are lead paint and mold due to the age and condition of the housing stock, air and noise pollution caused by heavy traffic on the major Interstate 5 freeway as a result of two local sports arenas, pedestrian safety due traffic and poor infrastructure such as inadequate street lighting and uneven pavement, and odors and garbage from the numerous businesses in the area.

The IDHA developed a model that allows limited-English speaking populations to provide input on community concerns using culturally and language appropriate tools. This model forms the basis of its proposal and strives to accomplish the following: (1) convene the project partner team to develop an implementation strategy for community outreach; (2) increase community awareness by facilitating education workshops on the topic of multimedia toxics to understand toxic exposure within the context of the neighborhood; (3) develop community goals to define participants, goals, and objectives of the project; (4) organize and analyze existing data on toxins in the International District, identifying areas where information is needed and developing strategies for further data collection; (5) develop community priorities by holding community meetings; (6) develop neighborhood strategies and outline recommendations for community change based on priorities identified; and (7) develop and conduct evaluation of program implementation and outcomes.

Under separate non-EPA funding, this project will also conduct surveys and data collection to support the CARE project.

Prospective CARE Partners: The Chinatown-International District Business Improvement Area (CIDBIA); the Environmental Health Services Division of Public Health - Seattle and King County; Sustainable Seattle; the Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health at the University of Washington; the Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County; the International Community Health Services; Seattle Public Utilities; the City of Seattle.

See also the IDHA Level II CARE award.

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Level II

Groundwork Denver, Inc.

Groundwork Denver, Inc.
Denver, Colorado
EPA Region 8

Groundwork Denver, Inc., on behalf of the Healthy Air for Northeast Denver (HAND) Partnership, is the recipient of Level II CARE funding. HAND is a collaborative partnership borne out of the Northeast Denver Environmental Initiative, an effort to focus EPA Region 8 resources on NE Denver in response to community concerns regarding disproportionate air quality impacts from industrial and mobile source emissions. Several of the HAND neighborhoods have been classified as Environmental Justice communities. The area also has one active Superfund site, and is undertaking efforts to remediate toxic substances, particularly lead and arsenic, from soils on residential property. More than 25 organizations, businesses, and agencies that comprise HAND have agreed to reduce exposure to emissions of toxics with a focus on three priority areas: (1) diesel and stationary sources; (2) indoor air and community involvement; (3) land use and transportation improvement and development.

HAND intends to improve public health and the environment in minority and low-income communities by reducing pollutants that emanate from diesel and stationary sources. This project will provide compliance assistance and outreach to two specific sectors in North Denver - small businesses and large businesses with diesel fleets. HAND plans to hold workshops to promote best practices that will reduce emissions in these facilities.

HAND proposes two projects to improve indoor air quality: The Healthy Indoor Air Education and Outreach Project (HIAP) and the Breathe Better Bus The HIAP educates residents on the issues of immediate health concern that can be addressed at the individual level, such as proper disposal of household chemicals, carbon monoxide poisoning and prevention, fire safety, and pesticide prevention. The Breath Better Bus is a mobile classroom that carries six interactive learning stations to schools, health clinics, community events, and corporate health fairs. This Bus has been featured in EPA's national report highlighting successful community-based activities.

With respect to land use, HAND will focus on the following projects: a small area plan, healthy living opportunities, and mapping and distributing previously established truck routes within the community. Some of the activities that will be performed include creating recommendations for land use policy implementation that can be easily reviewed by the Denver City Council, identifying appropriate routes for diesel semi-trucks traveling on the interstate, and planning the future direction of the City.

Established CARE Partnership: The scope of the HAND Project includes the neighborhoods of Cole, Clayton, Elyria, Swansea, Sunnyside, Globeville, and Commerce City. In addition to Groundwork Denver, current partners include the American Lung Association, Blue Sun Biodiesel, City and County of Denver (Environmental Health and Planning Depts), Civic Association of Clayton, Colorado Asthma Coalition, Colorado Dept of Public Health and Environment, CO Dept of Transportation , Colorado People's Environmental and Economic Network, FrontRange Earth Force, Northeast Denver Housing Center, Offices of Councilperson Judy Montero, and Congressional Representative Diana DeGette, Regional Air Quality Council, and Suncor Energy.

Read a case study on facilitation assistance provided to this project (PDF) (4pp, 819k) by EPA’s Conflict Prevention and Resolution Center.

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The New Haven City Government
New Haven, Connecticut
EPA Region 1

The City of New Haven is the recipient of a citywide Level II CARE cooperative agreement. This cooperative agreement builds on a community-based air toxics project EPA Region 1 has previously done in New Haven. It is the only applicant that is a City Government. The City of New Haven will use CARE funding to expand the existing air toxics initiative into a more comprehensive air, water and land stewardship program.

The New Haven City Government will undertake separate efforts related to air, water and land. In efforts to improve air quality, New Haven will focus on the criteria pollutants of ozone and particulate matter (PM), along with air toxics. It will mainly target diesel-powered on and off-road vehicles for emissions reductions, promote renewable power sources for community purposes, and encourage residential densities and land use patterns which reduce local vehicle miles traveled. With respect to water, the City seeks improvements to upstream wastewater treatment facilities, and statewide regulation of non-point sources of pollution. New Haven will educate residents and institutions on ways to limit their uses of harmful treatments and will promote alternative land use development patterns to protect salt marshes and wetlands from inappropriate development. Land preservation is their third area of focus. New Haven has identified the ability to preserve valued landscapes as "critical to the overall environmental health of the city." Consequently, it will pursue funding to acquire more than 200 acres of land, support community garden programs, and promote the value of urban forestry and tree programs through intensive community education and citywide urban tree improvement programs.

Established CARE Partnership: The Connecticut State Department of Environmental Protection; Environment Northeast; the New Haven Environmental Justice Network; New Haven Urban Resources Initiative, Inc.; Connstep, Inc.; Yale University; Schooner, Inc.; the City of New Haven Department of Health Community Service Administration; the New Haven Ecology Project Inc.; the New Haven Land Trust, Inc.

See New Haven’s Green map with description of CARE (PDF) (1pg, 1.8 MB) Exit EPA disclaimer

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Muskegon County Environmental Coordinating Council

Final Report (PDF) (12pp, 94k)

Muskegon County Environmental Coordinating Council
Muskegon, Michigan
EPA Region 5

The Muskegon County Environment Coordinating Council (MCECC) is the recipient of a Level II CARE cooperative agreement. This project provides an opportunity to explore the CARE approach in a non-urban setting. The MCECC will use CARE funding to address the environmental concerns of its community through extensive educational outreach. Historically, Muskegon County's economy depended on the logging and manufacturing industries, which were later discovered to have played a part in the region's environmental contamination. The County has identified the following environmental problems as its priorities: (1) the contamination of fish caught in local lakes and Lake Michigan with PCBs, mercury, dioxins, DDT, chlordane; (2) the condition of the region's drinking water; (3) the number of homes in the County contaminated with lead paint; (4) air quality and industrial waste issues; and (5) the lack of local recycling resources. The County envisions a multi-media effort to address these problems. The media will educate and inform citizens about the existing environmental issues prevalent in the region and encourage residents to take action and protect themselves.

CARE funding will finance media efforts, such as technology equipment for presentations, office supplies, printing services, educational signs and posts, newspaper advertisements, public service announcements, lead dust sample kits for neighborhood distribution, travel, postage, etc. Additionally, it will cover the cost for a project manager, who will be responsible for updating web sites, developing materials and presentation, organizing meeting schedules and special events, and participation in environmental organization meetings.

Established CARE Partnership: The Community Environmental Health Assessment Team (CEHA) consists of 27 community stakeholders: the West Michigan Shoreline Regional Development Commission; the City of Muskegon Commissioner; the Muskegon Area Intermediate School District; the Muskegon Chemical Council; the Muskegon Area Cooperating Churches; the Muskegon River Watershed Assembly; the United States Department of Agriculture; Grand Valley State University; Conservation District; Westshore Consulting; Save Our Shoreline; Timberland Resource, Conservation, and Development; the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality; the Urban League, the County Wastewater, the City of Muskegon Public Works, the Muskegon Family Care Director, Latinos Working for the Future; SAPPI Fine Paper.

Visit this community’s CARE web page. Exit EPA disclaimer

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The Grace Hill Settlement House
St. Louis, Missouri
EPA Region 7

The Grace Hill Settlement House is the recipient of a Level II CARE cooperative agreement in St. Louis. This proposal builds on the excellent work Region 7 has done with the St Louis Community Air Project (CAP) Partnership. Grace Hill will use CARE funding to address the poor air quality in the environmental justice areas of North and South St. Louis, Missouri. Grace Hill proposes a five-prong approach to improve air quality, using projects that actively engage both the general public and target sensitive populations. They have established quantifiable outcome measures for each of the five projects. These projects include: (1) identifying air pollution sources and use pollution prevention efforts to address the CAP's six pollutants of concern (diesel particulates, acetaldehyde, benzene, formaldehyde, arsenic and chromium), as well as other toxic pollutant risks; (2) improving indoor air quality through the promotion of the "Clean Air House Cleaner" as a less expensive, more health-protecting alternative to store-bought cleaners; (3) establishing Idle-Free Schools to limit vehicle idling at schools, and using a marketing campaign to engage the public; (4) enhancing the Clean Air Hotline that enables citizens to contact and receive a response from authorities on perceived toxic concerns; and (5) educating target sensitive populations to understand relationships amongst air toxics, behaviors and health using the curriculum In the Air: Tools for Learning About Airborne Toxics. This will include teaching through a community-based education program called "Neighborhood College (an adult continuing education program) and train-the-trainer courses for "Detox Your Domicile."

Established CARE Partnership: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry; American Bottom Conservancy (ABC); American Lung Association of Missouri; City of St. Louis (Air Pollution Control and other programs); Frauenhoffer and Associates; Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District (Bissell Point Treatment Plant); Missouri Department of Natural Resources; school districts in the metropolitan area and growing.

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Center for Environmental Information
Rochester, New York
EPA Region 2

The Center for Environmental Information, Inc. is the recipient of a Level II CARE cooperative agreement representing the Rochester CARE Collaborative. This project builds on work the Rochester community has previously conducted with Region 2. The CEI will use CARE funding to reduce health and environmental risks, primarily toxic air emissions, in the metropolitan Rochester area. The first phase of the program has the goal of identifying on-going funding sources to sustain the program and its regular evaluation and measurement components. The CEI has already identified the three key toxics issues in Rochester. They are mobile and stationary air toxics, lead poisoning, and the lack of knowledge of toxics effects among low-income residents.

The CEI has outlined a program with six major projects that intend to address the key toxic issues in Rochester. The first project narrows the toxics information gap by establishing an accessible neighborhood-based resource program on toxics information. The second enables the Rochester City School District to further reduce toxic exposure of children and developing associated educational messages. The third project organizes a Countywide Campaign through a small cooperative agreement program to reduce mobile air toxic emissions and uses agency resources to provide information about sources of mobile air toxics and their impact on health. The fourth project pursues pollution prevention measures aimed at small area stationary sources of toxic air emissions and provide technical assistance to these small source generators to reduce emissions. The fifth assists in efforts to match homeowners and landlords with funding sources for lead abatement measures. The last project uses the Center for Environmental Information as the continuing convener of the Collaborative, which will become the focal point for identifying new and emerging toxic risks.

Established CARE Partnership: The City of Rochester; the Rochester Department of Environmental Services; the Rochester City School District; Eastman Kodak Company; the Monroe County Department of Public Health; NYS Department of Environmental Conservation; the University of Rochester; the Rochester Green Business Network; the Federation of Monroe County Environmentalists; Genesse Transportation Council; the Rochester Institute of Technology; the Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning; the Regional Community Asthma Networks.

Visit this community’s CARE web page. Exit EPA disclaimer

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