May 26, 2023
Pennsylvania will receive $14 million to clean abandoned sites with potential contaminants, politicians said Friday.
Sens. Bob Casey and John Fetterman, the two Pennsylvania representatives in the U.S. Senate, announced the federal funding. The money will be distributed among 18 counties, townships, authorities and conservation groups across the state who applied to the EPA's brownfield program. Brownfields are abandoned or underused sites with potential contaminants, pollutants or other hazardous materials that make their development more expensive, like former steel mills or brick yards.
The Delaware County Redevelopment Authority and Montgomery County Redevelopment Authority are two of the funding recipients; they will receive $1 million and $500,000, respectively, to clean up sites in their communities.
Over half of the funding was enabled through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which passed in November 2021.
"Thanks to the infrastructure law, Pennsylvania can not only clean up contaminated brownfield sites but reinvigorate communities that have suffered from job losses, environmental degradation, and health problems," Sen. Casey said.
"We've got to do everything we can to make sure our communities everywhere, no matter how rural, urban or suburban, have clean air and water," Sen. Fetterman added. "This critical investment will help get us there."
The EPA estimates that there are over 450,000 brownfield sites in the U.S. The agency has been funding brownfield cleanups since 1995 and says the program has created more than 183,817 jobs across the country.
Philadelphia is home to several brownfields, some of which have already been redeveloped for new businesses. The Rivers Casino in Fishtown and the Grays Ferry Crescent park both sit on such sites.
Over a decade ago, Teva Pharmaceuticals announced plans to transform a 138-acre brownfield property in Northeast Philly into a $300 million complex, but ultimately abandoned the project in 2012. The company sold the site in 2018.
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