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EPA Press Advisory: New Report Details Brownfields Progress by 23 Federal Agencies

Release Date: 09/21/2004
Contact Information:

Dave Ryan 202-564-7827 /

(09/24/04) EPA is releasing a report detailing two years of progress by the Brownfields Federal Partnership at the Brownfields 2004 National Conference in St. Louis. The Brownfields Federal Partnership Action Agenda which was announced in November 2002 contained more than 100 commitments from 23 federal organizations to help revitalize communities throughout the nation. The Brownfields Federal Partnership Progress Report demonstrates progress fulfilling the Action Agenda commitments made by all of the agencies. More than 75 percent of the commitments have been met. Some highlights of the report:
      • EPA awarded approximately $77 million in Brownfields assessment, cleanup, revolving loan fund, and job training grants to communities nationwide and $49.7 million to states and tribes to establish or enhance their Brownfields programs in fiscal year 2004 alone.
      • EPA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), with other partners, selected the first three Portfields Pilots in New Bedford, Mass., Tampa, Fla., and Bellingham, Wash. These Pilots are part of a NOAA-led federal interagency effort that focuses on the redevelopment of Brownfields in port and harbor areas, with emphasis on development of environmentally sound port facilities.
      • EPA and the U.S. Department of Interior's Office of Surface Mining convened a multi-agency Mine-Scarred Lands Working Group that selected six typical abandoned mines communities throughout the country to serve as demonstration projects. The Working Group was established to collaboratively address the challenges of mine-scarred lands cleanup and revitalization.
      • The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) nearly doubled the number of Brownfields Economic Development Initiative (BEDI) applications by increasing their outreach and marketing efforts. The Brownfields Economic Development Initiative is a key competitive grant program that HUD administers to stimulate and promote economic and community development. In FY 2003, HUD's support amounted to $22.4 million in BEDI grants and $87.8 million in Section 108 loans for redevelopment. Section 108 loans allow communities to transform a small portion of their HUD grants into federally guaranteed loans large enough to pursue physical and economic revitalization projects that can renew entire neighborhoods.

For a copy of the Brownfields Federal Partnership Progress Report and information on the Portfields efforts, go to: .