Joplin tornado
1:17 pm
Thu October 4, 2012

Joplin Gets Additional Federal Funds To Clean Up Lead

The city of Joplin, Mo. is getting an additional boost in an effort to clean up soil contaminated by lead and cadmium that was blown around by the fatal EF-5 tornado in May 2011.

The $2.4 million from the Environmental Protection Agency's Superfund program will allow the city to remove the pollutants from an estimated 240 homes, park, playgrounds, and other places where children live or play over the next three years. The funds are in addition to $500,000 provided last December that allowed the city to hire a remediation coordinator and pay for the needed equipment, and excavation and replacement of contaminated soil.

"EPA is pleased to continue as a key partner in rebuilding Joplin,” Regional Administrator Karl Brooks said in a written statement. "This new funding will speed the redevelopment of Joplin’s neighborhoods, bringing life back to properties where families and children will once again be able to live and play in safe environments."

Since April 2012, the city has cleaned up 26 residential yards. Work at 21 other proprieties is under way, and another 28 have been approved for remediation.

Follow Rachel Lippmann on Twitter: @rlippmann