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Five Communities in the Southeast Receive Environmental Justice Cooperative Agreements

Release Date: 06/17/2004
Contact Information: Dawn Harris-Young, (404) 562-8421,
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded five communities in the southeast with Environmental Justice cooperative agreements to launch projects that address local environmental and public health issues using a collaborative problem-solving approach. Nationally, thirty projects were selected.

The five communities include:

Fresh Ministries, Inc., (FM) Jacksonville, FL

Fresh Ministries, Inc.'s goal is to develop a planning tool for public health agencies, the "Protocol for Assessing Community Excellence in Environmental Health," which will raise awareness of the environmental conditions and related diseases in East Jacksonville and help the agencies address these issues.

Harambee House Inc., Savannah, GA

The goal of Harambee House Inc.'s project is to address community health concerns associated with pollution from a neighboring paper plant through development of an educational program and comprehensive action plan.

Jesus People Against Pollution (JPAP), Columbia, MS

The goal of JPAP's project is to address the limitations of a study concerning the effects of an explosion at a chemical plant in the late 1990's. The project hopes to fill gaps in the data regarding federal environmental statutes. The new study will be compiled into a document that will be used to show the extent of the environmental damage and its effects on residents in the surrounding areas.

West Anniston Foundation, Anniston, AL

The goal of the West Anniston Foundation is to conduct educational outreach to Anniston citizens, particularly the community's youth, about the dangers of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) exposure in order to break the cycle of misinformation related to the nearby Superfund sites.

West End Revitalization Association, (WERA), Mebane, NC

WERA's goal is to develop an environmental health assessment to be used in Mebane and other low-income minority communities that are denied safe water, sewer services, and adequate housing conditions. Additionally, the project will train and assist residents in working with local and state officials to install safe water and sewer services and clean up a toxic substance site.

Under the Office of Environmental Justice's Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving Cooperative Agreement Program, each organization will receive $100,000 over three years. To accomplish the goals of these projects, the recipients will form partnerships with other affected community and grassroots organizations, local governments, health care providers, industry, and academia. This program was established in 2003 to provide financial assistance to eligible, affected local community-based organizations.