Three Missouri agencies will receive $1.6 million in federal funds to cleanup and redevelop contaminated properties.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced this week that it has selected public authorities in St. Louis, Springfield and Jefferson City, to receive the funding as part of its $15 million supplemental revolving loan funds (RLF).
Each agency will be awarded two distinct amounts, one to address hazardous substances and the other to address petroleum contamination. The quasi-governmental financing agency, Environmental Improvement and Energy Resources Authority (EIERA) of Jefferson City, and the St. Louis Development Corporation will each receive $300,000 for hazardous substances and $200,000 for petroleum. The City of Springfield will receive $250,000 and $350,000 respectively.
The EPA says the agencies were selected because they have effectively assisted communities through redevelopment programs in the past.
The St. Louis Development Corporation plans to focus primarily on St. Louis' urban core, protecting and providing opportunities for underserved populations and improving community spaces.
A statewide operation, the EIERA will focus its cleanup efforts on medium and small rural communities.
Springfield will use its funding to improve environmental justice areas and to transform a rail yard back into its original wetland state.
The RLF assistance is part of the EPA's Brownfields Program which targets abandoned and contaminated properties for redevelopment and productive community use.
The RLF funds give state, local and tribal authorities the ability to make low-interest loans to carry out activities at brownfields properties. According to the EPA, the aim of this program is to bolster the local economy and encourage stakeholders to leverage resources in order to clean up and redevelop brownfields. Once the loan has been repaid, the loan amount is returned to the fund and re-lent to other borrowers, providing an ongoing source of capital within the community.