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City of Tacoma Awarded $300,000 in EPA Brownfields Job Training Grant funds to train workers for a better, “greener” future

Release Date: 07/20/2011
Contact Information: Susan Morales, 206-553-7299,, Mark MacIntyre, 206-553-7302,

(Tacoma, Wash. – July 20, 2011) The City of Tacoma will receive $300,000 in EPA Brownfields grant funding to provide job training to assess, manage and clean up solid and hazardous waste sites. Celebrating their fifth EPA financed job training program, the City of Tacoma and its partners boast a 75% placement rate for its graduates at an average wage of $13.74.

Brownfields was originally focused on training workers to transform rundown, largely urban, industrial real estate eyesores into revitalized, productive properties. Recently the program has expanded to provide workers valuable job training to assess, manage and clean up a broader universe of contaminated sites in a variety of venues.

“Brownfields job training helps provide workers with the tools they need to launch a career or get a better job,” said Dennis McLerran EPA Regional Administrator. “It’s a program we’re especially proud of because every day, the Brownfields program puts local workers on the job improving the places they call home.”

The City of Tacoma and Clover Park plan to train 90 students with the latest grant and expects to place a minimum of 65 graduates in environmental jobs. The City plans to track the success of its graduates for one year following their training.

Trainees will receive certifications in 40-hour Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response, industrial spill response, lead and asbestos abatement, and Operational Safety and Health Administration construction readiness. Participants also will receive instruction in one of three tracks focused on life-cycle assessment, wastewater treatment apprenticeship, or green site remediation.

Since 1998, EPA has awarded more than $35 million under the Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training Program. As of May 2011, more than 6,683 individuals have been trained through the program, and more than 4,400 have been placed in full-time employment in the environmental field with an average starting hourly wage of $14.65.

EPA established the Brownfields Job Training Program to help residents take advantage of jobs created by the assessment, as well as to spur cleanup and sustainable reuse of brownfields sites and to ensure that the economic benefits derived from brownfields redevelopment remain in the affected communities.

For more on EPA’s Brownfields Workforce Development Job Training Grants:

For more about Brownfields work in Region 10 please visit: