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EPA Awards Ten Environmental Justice Grants

Release Date: 09/14/2010
Contact Information: CONTACT: Kären Thompson, 312-353-8547,

For Immediate Release
No. 10-OPA107

CHICAGO (Sept. 14, 2010) — U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 has awarded 10 grants totaling $250,000 for community-based environmental justice projects in Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin.

Region 5 EJ grant recipients are: Little Village Environmental Justice Organization and City of East St. Louis Community Development in Illinois; Southwest Detroit Environmental Vision, Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice and Kent County Health Department in Michigan; Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy in Minnesota; Earth Day Coalition and Communities United for Action in Ohio; and Growing Power and Silver Spring Neighborhood Center in Wisconsin.

Nationally, EPA has awarded approximately $2 million in grants to organizations working with communities facing environmental justice challenges throughout the country. EJ grants, up to $25,000 each, are going to community-based organizations and local and tribal governments for community projects aimed at addressing environmental and public health issues.

Little Village Environmental Justice Organization, Chicago, $25,000 to conduct a grassroots Clean Power Campaign to address coal-powered plant emissions and complete weatherization of 100 housing units. The organization will also work in partnership with the Chicago Transit Authority to begin a new 12-mile cross-town bus service that will serve 300,000 people in seven Chicago areas and the town of Cicero.

City of East St. Louis Community Development , East St. Louis, $25,000 to develop a Green Jobs Training Academy. Green jobs will focus on four sectors including weatherization, renewable energy technology installation, green roof installation and lead abatement technology.

Southwest Detroit Environmental Vision, Detroit, $25,000 to collect video testimonies from residents and students on the impact of local truck traffic on air and water quality. Eight local truck companies will learn about emissions reduction, anti-idling campaigns and partnership opportunities.

Detroiters Working For Environmental Justice, Detroit, $25,000 to address climate change through community outreach and education. Two Community Hazards Awareness Workshops will reach approximately 400 residents.

Kent County Health Department, Grand Rapids, $25,000 to train 10 community members to perform radon testing and Integrated Pest Management assessment and remediation techniques. Project will alleviate pest issues in 60 targeted area residences by reducing pesticide use which will help reduce asthma symptoms.

Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, Minneapolis, $25,000 to establish a network of community groups to educate about climate justice and health issues in Twin Cities communities of color. Workshops will focus on how to maintain a healthy, energy-efficient home by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, home energy costs and chronic health conditions.

Earth Day Coalition, Cleveland, $25,000 to work with the community to revitalize vacant plots of land to expand open space, restore natural habitats and green the community with native plants. Local residents will learn about native Ohio plants, safe pesticide use and sustainable landscaping.

Communities United For Action, Cincinnati, $25,000 to educate residents in four low-income communities in Mill Creek Valley about air pollution, toxic chemicals and environmental justice. Community leaders will connect with eighth graders to develop environmental justice leaders and produce a local air pollution reduction action plan.

Growing Power, Inc., Milwaukee, $25,000 to educate southside families about preventing lead poisoning through organic gardening. Project will provide green job preparedness and opportunity for local youth through sustainable urban agriculture.

Silver Spring Neighborhood Center, Milwaukee, $25,000 to develop an outreach campaign on Integrated Pest Management, asthma and the health risks of pests and pesticide use. The Silver Spring Community and Milwaukee metro areas will learn effective ways to improve the health of their families through effective IPM practices.