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EPA hands out green infrastructure grants

July 23rd, 2012 / By: / Industry News

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
announced in a July 20 press release that it is providing $950,000 to assist 17 communities in
expansions of their green infrastructure use to improve water quality.

The release explained that green infrastructure “uses vegetation and soil to manage rainwater
where it falls, keeping polluted stormwater from entering sewer systems and waterways in local
communities.”

The EPA funding is intended to increase the incorporation of green infrastructure into stormwater
management programs, protect water quality, and provide community benefits, including job creation
and neighborhood revitalization, according to the release.

“Effective stormwater management is one of the most widespread challenges to water quality in the
nation,” said Nancy Stoner, the EPA’s acting assistant administrator for water. “Polluted stormwater
can be harmful to the health of our nation’s water bodies.”

The EPA is awarding the funds to diverse communities across 16 states. Some communities—such as
Beaufort, S.C., and Neosho, Mo.—are small towns in urban growth areas interested in preserving and
protecting healthy waterways.

Others, such as Camden, N.J., and Pittsburgh, are large cities that want to add green
infrastructure into their redevelopment projects to restore degraded urban waters. The release noted
that “Communities are increasingly using green infrastructure to supplement or substitute for
single-purpose ‘gray’ infrastructure investments such as pipes, filters, and ponds.”

In February, the EPA announced the availability of $950,000 in technical assistance to a second
set of partner communities to help overcome some of the most common barriers to green
infrastructure. The EPA had received letters of interest from more than 150 communities across the
country for that program.

Sources: U.S. EPA

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