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EPA Funds Rochester Community-Based Projects To Reduce Local Exposure To Pollution

Release Date: 11/3/2005
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FOR RELEASE: Thursday, November 3, 2005

(#05129) NEW YORK, N.Y. — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded $303,000 to the Center for Environmental Information in Rochester as part of the Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) grant program. CARE supports communities in creating and using collaborative partnerships to reduce exposure to pollutants. The center was chosen out of a field of 132 applicants nationwide in this inaugural year of the CARE program.

“CARE is a new EPA initiative designed to help communities improve their local environment for residents and workers,” EPA Regional Administrator Alan J. Steinberg explained. “This can best be accomplished when groups at the local level identify areas of concern and set the agenda for action. EPA will provide technical assistance and support throughout the process.”

The Center for Environmental Information (CEI) in Rochester was selected for a Level II CARE grant, which provides from $150,000 to $325,000 to communities with existing collaborative partnerships and action plans for pollution reduction to aid them in the implementation of their projects.

“The CARE Collaboration is a great demonstration of harnessing the synergy of a community to work interdependently to benefit the folks of all ages in the City of Rochester,” said CEI Executive Director Cindy M. Stachowski. “The Center of Environmental Information is honored to work with EPA and all the CARE partners.”

As a Level II grant recipient, the CEI plans to conduct the following six mini-projects, which are dedicated to reducing pollution in areas already identified as high priority by their local collaborative partnership:

    • CEI will work with the city’s Neighbors Building Neighborhoods program to increase knowledge of toxics and their effects in the most impacted communities through a Neighborhood Toxic Education initiative.
    • The same initiative will be used to augment efforts to reduce mobile air toxics on urban school grounds and surrounding neighborhoods by retrofitting seven diesel refrigerator trucks owned and operated by the Rochester City School District.
    • The CARE grant will also be used to create new community-based mobile air toxics education and reduction programs.
    • The Rochester CARE program, led by CEI, will identify and provide pollution prevention technical assistance to small industries and businesses that are sources of air toxics.
    • The Rochester CARE program will collaborate with the Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning to match property owners housing children under six with available funding sources for lead remediation.
    • Finally, the Rochester CARE Collaborative Working Group will continue indefinitely as an important collection of diverse interests that identifies and addresses unmet needs regarding toxics in Greater Rochester.
The Oneida County Health Department was selected for a Level I Care grant of $89,000 to canvas and prioritize pollutants and create a collaborative partnership to make community decisions on high priority pollutants.

For more information visit EPA’s Web site at