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EPA Information Related to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act)

Tools and Best Practices Supporting the Recovery Act

Tools to Help Federal Agencies Comply with Environmental Requirements

Compliance Assistance - Find assistance tools for specific statutes or regulations and compliance information for specific industry and government sectors

FedCenter.gov – Find federal government resources and information pertaining to multiple program areas such as clean-up, transportation, NEPA, pollution prevention, and energy

Review and Comparison of Recovery Act Funding Potentially Impacting the Environment

Many projects receiving Recovery Act funding could impact air pollutant emissions, climate change, water pollution, land conservation, waste management, and/or release of toxics into the environment. Using publicly-available information from other agencies' Recovery Act Web sites, this December 2009 paper (PDF) (9 pp., 89K, about PDF) highlights and groups investments related to the environment. Categories include renewable energy, energy efficiency, water infrastructure, toxics and cleanup, transportation, and federal buildings.

View EPA's recommendations to incorporate green practices into federally funded construction projects.

The Recovery Act calls for investment in “environmental protection and other infrastructure that will provide long-term economic benefits.”  As such, it provides unparalleled opportunities for the Federal government to demonstrate environmental leadership in energy efficiency, green building, purchasing, and other sustainability strategies.

While EPA has direct implementation responsibilities for six program areas, other federal agencies and the recipients of Recovery Act funds can also incorporate sustainable practices into their Recovery activities. On this page you will find key work that will be done by other agencies and EPA resources that can help support sustainable outcomes.

Abandoned Mine Cleanup

  • Abandoned Mine Lands (AML) - EPA's resources related to the range of environmental risks and challenges from AMLs as well as risk management approaches.

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Alternative Vehicles and Fleets

  • Fueleconomy.gov – EPA and Department of Energy program to provide fuel economy information on vehicles. Includes information on hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles.

  • Green Vehicle Guide - Allows users to easily identify the greenhouse gas emission and fuel economy performance of all vehicles sold as well as identify the top environmental performing vehicles that receive EPA's SmartWay certification mark.

  • Smartway – Products and services that reduce transportation-related air and greenhouse gas emissions.

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Buildings and Grounds

Built Environment

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Green Building Materials (Procurement Guidance)

  • Federal Green Construction Guide for Specifiers Exit EPA Disclaimer - A comprehensive guide for procuring green building products and construction services within the Federal government

  • Environmentally Preferable Purchasing DatabaseDesigned to help federal agencies buy greener products and services by linking to contract language, specifications, and policies created and used by federal and states governments and other institutional purchasing to buy environmentally preferable products and services.  Also includes environmental standards and guidelines, and vendor lists of product brands. 

  • Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines – An EPA program designed to promote the use of materials recovered from solid waste. EPA designates products that are or can be made with recovered materials, and recommends practices for buying these products. Guides are available for construction, landscaping, parks and recreation, transportation, and other products.  

  • Environmental Technology Verification Program - Verified technologies for air quality monitoring and control of air pollution and greenhouse gases.

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Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

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Environmental Cleanup

  • Green Remediation - Tools to help site cleanup and reuse stakeholders make informed decisions about "green cleanup" strategies.

  • Environmental Technology Verification Program - Verified technologies for environmental measurement and monitoring.

  • Smart Energy Resources Guide (PDF) (200 pp., 5.1 MB, About PDF) - Opportunities to reduce diesel emissions from energy use during remediation activities. Includes information on solar, wind, landfill gas-to-energy and other renewable energy technologies that may be applicable in cleanup activities.

  • Cleanups in My Community - A mapping and listing tool that shows sites where pollution is being or has been cleaned up throughout the United States.

  • Brownfields Sustainability Pilots – The Brownfields Sustainability Pilots are an EPA effort to promote environmental sustainability at local brownfields projects. EPA is providing communities with technical assistance to help them achieve greener assessment, cleanup, and redevelopment at their brownfields.

  • Ecological Revitalization - Tools and resources for returning polluted or otherwise disturbed lands to a functioning and sustainable use by increasing or improving habitat for plants and animals.

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Environmental Financial Tools

  • Center for Environmental Finance (CEF) - The CEF and other EPA programs provide a number of tools, including the Guidebook of Financial Tools, to assist state and local communities with finding the means of financing environmental protection initiatives.

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Environmental Justice

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Information Technology (Purchasing and Recycling)

  • EPEAT – Electronic tool helping institutional purchasers select and compare computer desktops, laptops and monitors based on their environmental attributes.
  • E-cycle – Basic information about recycling electronics

  • Responsible Recycling (R2) Practices - A set of guidelines for accredited certification programs to assess electronics recyclers’ environmental, worker health and safety, and security practices.

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Infrastructure (Roads, Railways, Transmission Lines, Water Systems)

  • Green Infrastructure – Guidance to help communities improve water quality while providing wildlife habitat and opportunities for outdoor recreation.

  • Low Impact Development –Provides information on innovative techniques and strategies to manage stormwater as close to its source as possible employing principles, such as preserving natural landscape features and minimizing imperviousness.

  • Clean Construction USAResources for reducing diesel emissions from construction equipment and vehicles.

  • Construction Initiative – Provides technical assistance to transportation officials, building owners, real estate developers, architects, and general contractors to increase the recycling and reuse of industrial materials in building and transportation construction projects.

  • Coal Combustion Products Partnership - Resources to foster beneficial use of coal combustion products in transportation, building and infrastructure projects

  • Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) – Provides information on risks associated with PCB exposure, including information on PCBs in transformers and capacitors.

  • Smart GrowthResources for encouraging environmentally-sensitive development

  • Sustainable Skylines Initiative - Tools and resources to help States and local governments achieve immediate air quality benefits by integrating transportation, climate, energy, land use and other nontraditional strategies into air quality planning. 

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Highways and Public Transit

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Water Infrastructure

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Lead Hazard Reduction

  • Lead - Basic information about lead health effects and how to protect against lead poisoning during renovation, repair and painting. Includes safe work practices for contractors.

  • Environmental Technology Verification Program - Verified technologies for air quality monitoring and control of air pollution and greenhouse gases.

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School Improvement

  • Healthy Schools Initiative – An EPA website designed to provide one-stop access to the many programs and resources available to help prevent and resolve environmental issues in schools.

  • Clean School Bus USA – Resources to help reduce children's exposure to diesel exhaust and the amount of air pollution created by diesel school buses.

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Watershed Restoration and Flood Prevention

  • Watershed Central -  Designed to provide state, local, and voluntary watershed management entities with a variety of tools and information that will aide in successful watershed management.

  • Wetlands - Resources to support wetlands restoration, creation, and enhancement, including information on flood management, shoreline erosion, recreation, and other wetland benefits.  

  • Nonpoint Source Pollution – Practical tips and resources to help communities and citizens address nonpoint source pollution.

  • Protecting Water Resources with Higher-Density Development – Helps communities better understand the impacts of higher and lower density development on water resources.

  • Environmental Technology Verification Program - Verified technologies that protect groundwater and surface water from contamination.

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Workforce Training and Development

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