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  • 04 Dec 2023 11:09 AM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    Finger Lakes Times (NY)

    The G.W. Lisk Co. manufacturing site in Clifton Springs has been identified by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) as having dangerously high levels of trichloroethene (TCE), a toxic chemical used in industrial processes.

    The DEC's Region 8 office in Avon, after reviewing a Remedial Investigation Report prepared by the company, has determined that the site poses a significant threat to public health and the environment due to the elevated levels of TCE in the groundwater, according to the Finger Lakes Times.

    The report highlighted that the levels of TCE found in the site's overburden groundwater are 340 times higher than the state's permissible limits, measuring at 1,700 micrograms per liter.

    For the entire article, see
    https://www.fingerlakes1.com/2023/11/29/high-levels-of-toxic-chemical-found-at-g-w-lisk-site-in-clifton-springs/<https://www.fingerlakes1.com/2023/11/29/high-levels-of-toxic-chemical-found-at-g-w-lisk-site-in-clifton-springs/>
  • 30 Nov 2023 11:50 AM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    Mid-Hudson News (NY)

    A proposed environmental plan for the more than 15-acre brownfield site called ?5 Scobie Drive? in the City of Newburgh has been proposed.

    The vacant land abounded by the Newburgh City DPW property, a tributary of Gidneytown Creek and a commercial facility, operated as an unpermitted landfill from the late 1940s until around 1976 and has not been closed in accordance with the State Department of Environmental Conservation solid waste regulations.

    According to the DEC, it reportedly accepted municipal and possibly industrial and incinerator waste.

    For the entire article, see

    https://midhudsonnews.com/2023/11/27/remedy-proposed-for-newburgh-brownfield-site-contamination/


     

  • 30 Nov 2023 11:47 AM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    Program Policies issued by the Division of Environmental Remediation (DER) include Technical and Administrative Guidance Memorandums (TAGMs), Spill Technology and Remediation Series (STARS), Spill Prevention Operations Technology Series (SPOTS) and the Spill Guidance Manual (SGM). These guidance series are being updated and replaced by the DER series (DER-#).

    Read more...

  • 30 Nov 2023 11:45 AM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    New funding will ensure communities have access to clean waterways and safe drinking water

    November 29, 2023

    Contact Information

    (r3press@epa.gov)

    PHILADELPHIA, PA – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will award West Virginia $109.88 million to support improvements to water systems and access to safe drinking water across the state. Most of the funding—$93.15 million—comes from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL), which is the largest federal investment in water infrastructure in our nation’s history. This BIL funding will supplement $16.73 million in FY 23 funding assigned to West Virginia’s Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds (SRFs). 

    “These awards show that EPA is not just a regulator – but is a funder and partner,” said EPA’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Adam Ortiz. “The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law ensures communities most in need and those grappling with emerging contaminants such as PFAS have access to funding that will deliver cleaner and safer water for generations to come.”

    EPA awards grants to states annually to capitalize the State Revolving Funds (SRFs) which provide low or no interest loans for water infrastructure projects. West Virginia will use this money to help communities across the state fund necessary water projects that some borrowers may not have been able to afford otherwise. Proposed projects for this funding are listed in the states intended use plans.

    “Thanks to the dedicated leadership of Governor Jim Justice and the support from the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, West Virginia, in cooperation with our federal partners, is set to make significant strides in enhancing our wastewater systems and ensuring safe drinking water for all our residents," said West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Harold Ward. "Governor Justice's proactive approach and collaboration with federal initiatives have been pivotal in securing these funds. The increased funding will not only address immediate needs, but lays the foundation for a healthier, more sustainable future for communities of need throughout our state."

    The BIL delivers more than $50 billion to EPA to improve our nation’s drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater infrastructure - the single largest investment in water that the federal government has ever made. Learn more  about the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

    For more information on intended projects for this Drinking Water SRF funding in West Virginia, please visit:  https://oehs.wvdhhr.org/eed/infrastructure-capacity-development/intended-use-plans/. For information on intended projects for this Clean Water SRF funding, please visit: https://dep.wv.gov/WWE/programs/SRF/Pages/default.aspx.


  • 21 Nov 2023 11:55 AM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    Governor Kathy Hochul today announced over $23 million has been awarded to support 101 communities across the state through part of Round XIII of the Regional Economic Development Council Initiative. The award will help promote smart, sustainable and equitable community planning, development and construction of projects that focus on accessible economic, community, environmental and recreational improvements in all New York’s regions.

    Read more...

  • 21 Nov 2023 11:53 AM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice and External Civil Rights announces the largest single investment in environmental justice in history, funded by President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act

    November 21, 2023

    Contact Information

    EPA Press Office (press@epa.gov)

    WASHINGTON — Today, the Biden-Harris administration announced approximately $2 billion in funding available to support community-driven projects that deploy clean energy, strengthen climate resilience, and build capacity for communities to tackle environmental and climate justice challenges. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Community Change Grants are the single largest investment in environmental justice going directly to communities in history, and will advance collaborative efforts to achieve a healthier, safer, and more prosperous future for all. These funds, part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, are made possible by the President’s Inflation Reduction Act—the biggest-ever investment in clean energy and climate action.

    “Throughout my Journey to Justice tour, I’ve heard from residents and advocates calling for resources to support local solutions in communities that have long been overlooked and forgotten,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “Today, thanks to President Biden’s commitment to investing in communities that have long struggled to access federal funding, we are delivering on these calls to action. This historic, unprecedented funding has the promise to turn disadvantaged and overburdened areas into healthy, resilient, and thriving communities for current and future generations.”

    “For far too long, communities that have borne the brunt of power plant and industrial pollution have been left out and left behind,” said John Podesta, Senior Advisor to the President for Clean Energy Innovation and Implementation. “The Inflation Reduction Act and President Biden’s Justice40 initiative change that by bringing new investment, clean energy, and good-paying jobs to disadvantaged communities.”

    “President Biden is leading a whole-of-government effort to confront longstanding environmental injustices and inequities,” said White House Council on Environmental Quality Chair Brenda Mallory. “Thanks to this historic funding covered under the President’s Justice40 Initiative, we are investing in locally-driven solutions to make a positive difference for communities that have suffered from pollution, underinvestment, and decades of disproportionate environmental impacts. Investments like these show how we are delivering on the President’s ambitious environmental justice agenda and his commitment to build more equitable and resilient communities for generations to come.”

    The Community Change Grants deliver on President Biden's historic commitment to advance equity and justice, including his Justice40 Initiative. The Community Change Grants will deliver 100 percent of the benefits of this program to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized by underinvestment and overburdened by pollution. This program also dedicates $200 million of Inflation Reduction Act funding to provide technical assistance to applicants and grant recipients, which will enhance the ability of disadvantaged communities to access resources for environmental and climate justice activities.

    The activities to be performed under the grants are expected to fall under the following categories:

    Climate resiliency and adaptation.

    Mitigating climate and health risks from urban heat islands, extreme heat, wood heater emissions, and wildfire events.

    Community-led air and other (including water and waste) pollution monitoring, prevention, and remediation.

    Investments in low- and zero-emission and resilient technologies and related infrastructure.

    Workforce development that supports the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and other air pollutants.

    Reducing indoor toxics and indoor air pollution.

    Facilitating the engagement of disadvantaged communities in state and federal advisory groups, workshops, rulemakings, and other public processes.

    The Community Change Grants Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), administered through the Office of Environmental Justice and External Civil Rights (OEJECR), has several unique characteristics to advance environmental and climate justice, many of which are responsive to feedback and input the agency has heard from communities. These include: 

    Rolling Applications: The NOFO will be open for a year, closing on November 21, 2024, and EPA will review applications on a rolling basis. This allows applicants to utilize technical assistance and possibly resubmit a new application if not initially selected. EPA encourages applicants to apply as early as possible.

    Two-track Submission Processes: Applications can be submitted under two separate tracks depending on the project scope and funding requested.

    Track I, Community-Driven Investments for Change, is expected to award approximately $1.96 billion for 150 projects for $10-20 million each.

    Track II, Meaningful Engagement for Equitable Governance, is expected to award approximately $40 million for 20 projects for $1-3 million each.

    Oral Presentations: Track I applicants may also be invited to participate in an oral presentation. These oral presentations will enable EPA reviewers to hear directly from the applicants and their partners to learn more about community priorities, desired outcomes, and plans for long-term sustainability. This new format is responsive to community requests to engage with EPA in more accessible ways.

    Target Investment Areas: Out of the $2 billion in funding, EPA has identified five Target Investment Areas (TIA) to help ensure that communities with unique circumstances, geography, and needs can equitably compete for funding. These are:

    Tribes in Alaska: $150 million for projects benefitting Indian Tribes in Alaska including funds for cleanup of contaminated lands.

    Tribes: $300 million for projects benefitting Tribal communities in the other states. 

    Territories: $50 million for projects benefitting disadvantaged communities in the United States’ territories of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Northern Mariana Islands.

    Disadvantaged Unincorporated Communities: $50 million for projects benefitting small and rural areas that lack fixed, legally determined geographic boundaries, such as Colonias.

    U.S.-Southern Border Communities: Consistent with EPA’s longstanding commitment to addressing transborder pollution challenges, $100 million for projects benefitting non-Tribal disadvantaged communities within 100 kilometers north of the U.S.-Mexico border.

    Technical Assistance: The $200 million for technical assistance is available in direct response to feedback from communities and environmental justice leaders who have long called for capacity building support for communities and their partners as they work to access critical federal resources. With this funding, there are two TA programs dedicated for the Community Change Grants. Applicants can learn more about, and express interest in, the technical assistance on EPA’s Community Change Grants Technical Assistance webpage.

    Read the Community Change Grants NOFO.


    OEJECR will also host multiple informational webinars while the NOFO is open, with the first being held on December 7, 2023. These webinars will address questions, and some may facilitate the formation of partnerships and information sharing. More information on upcoming webinars can be found on EPA’s Inflation Reduction Act Community Change Grants Program webpage.

    Learn more about environmental justice at EPA

    Learn more about Inflation Reduction funding at EPA

    For up-to-date information about the NOFO, including information on the webinars, subscribe to the Office of Environmental Justice and External Civil Rights’ listserv by sending a blank email to: join-epa-ej@lists.epa.gov. Follow OEJECR on X (formerly Twitter): @EPAEnvJustice.

    Background

    The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) created the Environmental and Climate Justice Program, the largest investment in environmental and climate justice in U.S. history when it was signed into law by President Biden on August 16, 2022. Under this program, EPA was provided $3 billion to award grants and fund related technical assistance to benefit disadvantaged communities. 

    Earlier in 2023, EPA issued a Request for Information, held a dedicated consultation with EPA’s National Environmental Justice Advisory Council, and hosted multiple webinars to gain public input on innovative strategies and approaches for competition design, community engagement, equitable distribution of financial resources, grantee eligibility for funding, capacity-building and outreach, and more. This feedback was crucial in designing key elements of the Community Change Grants and this NOFO, including the Target Investment Areas, incorporating oral presentations, the rolling application period, and more. EPA thanks everyone for their incredibly valuable time and input, which ensured the creation of a more inclusive and accessible grant program.

  • 21 Nov 2023 11:52 AM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    The Portland Generating Station in Upper Mount Bethel, Pa., opened in 1958 and operated as a coal-fired power plant until 2015 when the facility’s boilers were shut down under a court agreement with then-owner NRG Energy. The reason? Pollution and environmental concerns. Since then, the plant remained dormant, “as an eyesore on the Delaware River,” according to Lou Pektor, president of River Pointe Commerce Park, the company that took over the 162-acre site and the adjacent 640 acres in 2021 with the intent to build a massive industrial campus over the next decade.

    Read more...

  • 18 Oct 2023 3:33 PM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    By Daviid M. Zimmer, NorthJersey.com

    Nearly two years since the delayed $18 million surface contamination cleanup started at the Ringwood Mines Superfund site, a finish line remains months away.

    The project, which started in November 2021 and was expected to take one year to complete, has been mired in delays stemming from faulty survey data. Officials at de maximis inc., the firm hired by Ford Motor Co. to coordinate the cleanup, said work could nonetheless resume on the soil cap for the borough-owned O?Connor Disposal Area landfill later in October or November, records show.

    Geotextile caps have already been installed at the site's two other areas of concern, the Cannon Mine and Peter's Mine pits. Used along with the disposal area to dump paint sludge, chemical solvents and other toxic waste from Ford?s former Mahwah factory, the pits were initially part of a working network of iron mines.

    For the entire article, see
    https://www.northjersey.com/story/news/passaic/ringwood/2023/10/16/ringwood-mines-superfund-site-delays-surface-cleanup/71147910007/
  • 17 Oct 2023 3:30 PM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    October 17, 2023

    Contact Information

    Vikram Lakshmanan (lakshmanan.vikram@epa.gov)

    (617) 918-1017

    BOSTON (Oct. 17, 2023) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has selected a cleanup plan for the Keddy Mill Superfund site, located on Depot Street in Windham, Maine. EPA will clean up the soil, sediment, and groundwater at the site.

    The cleanup plan is based on EPA's Remedial Investigation Report, human health and ecological risk assessments, the Feasibility Study, and comments received on EPA's Proposed Plan during a 30-day public comment period. This cleanup plan is formally called a Record of Decision.

    "EPA's cleanup plan for the Keddy Mill Superfund Site is a strong effort to ensure the health and safety of community members, protecting them for generations to come." said EPA New England Regional Administrator David W. Cash. "Cleaning up Superfund sites helps us ensure that no community, no family, and no child has to face exposure to chemicals and other dangerous substances in their day to day lives."

    "The Town is very pleased with the recently approved comprehensive cleanup plan and remedial alternatives for the Keddy Mill Superfund Site. Working with the EPA, local residents and the State to achieve this milestone in planning the restoration for this site is exciting. This plan protects the human health or welfare of residents, the environment from actual or threatened releases of hazardous substances, pollutants, or contaminants into the environment." said Windham Town Manager Barry Tibbetts. 

    "The Maine DEP is pleased to continue working with our partners at EPA and the citizens of Windham to address historical contamination at the Keddy Mill, eliminating the threats to public health and the environment and returning the property to a productive future," said Maine Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Melanie Loyzim.

    EPA's cleanup plan will take two to four years to design and execute and will take place after the significant completion of a Removal Action to demolish the mill complex and associated structures. The cleanup plan includes the following components:

    • Excavation and off-site disposal of contaminated soil and debris from the Mill Complex property;
    • Targeted treatment of soil (within the footprint of the excavation) with amendments in support of groundwater cleanup;
    • In situ (in place) treatment of groundwater contaminants;
    • Excavation and off-site disposal of contaminated sediments from the Presumpscot River;
    • Treatment of water generated from soil and sediment dewatering and removed from excavations based on applicable water discharge standards, as required;
    • Restoration of the portions of the Presumpscot River altered by the remedial action;
    • Land use restrictions to prevent exposure to site-related contaminants in groundwater and fish tissue until cleanup levels are met,
    • Inspections and operation and maintenance;
    • Monitoring of groundwater and fish tissue to evaluate the achievement of cleanup levels; and
    • Five-Year Reviews to assess the protectiveness of the remedy.

    EPA estimates that the total cost of this portion of the project, including construction, operation and maintenance, and long-term monitoring, will be around $17 million.

    Background

    EPA added the Keddy Mill Superfund Site to the Superfund National Priorities List in 2014. The site consists of a 6.93-acre abandoned mill complex property, located at 7 Depot Street (the Mill Complex Property), an adjacent reach of the Presumpscot River, and associated riparian properties in Windham, Maine.

    The site has a long history, with operations beginning in the late 1700s and ending in 1997. The building that will be demolished and removed was used as a grist and carding mill, pulp mill, box-board manufacturing facility and as a steel mill. Throughout the industrial history, several buildings have been demolished and others added to the mill complex. The site has contamination from various hazardous substances, including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), heavy metals and petroleum hydrocarbons.

    More information:

    A copy of the cleanup plan, the Administrative Record supporting the cleanup plan, and other background information about the Keddy Mill Superfund Site can be found at: www.epa.gov/superfund/keddy

    The Windham Public Library, located at 217 Windham Center Road, Windham, Maine 04062 (phone: 207-892-1908) can be used as a point of access to reach the online Administrative Record for the site. If you would like a copy of the cleanup plan mailed to you, please contact EPA Community Involvement Coordinator, Charlotte Gray, at gray.charlotte@epa.gov or 617-918-1243. toll-free 1-888-372-7341 ext. 8-1243.

    Record of Decision Administrative Record:
    https://cumulis.epa.gov/supercpad/SiteProfiles/index.cfm?fuseaction=second.ars&id=0106078&doc=Y&colid=67421&region=01&type=AR

  • 15 Oct 2023 3:35 PM | Michael Lazo (Administrator)

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Environmental advocates have expressed concerns that proposed budget cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) may slow down the cleanup of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), commonly referred to as “forever chemicals,” in public drinking water and military sites, both in Maryland and across the United States. 

    Read more...

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