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EPA Announces $4.59 Million for Environmental Improvements on Tribal Lands in Nevada

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Margot Perez-Sullivan (

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced $4.59 million in funding to 15 Nevada tribes to invest in environmental programs, drinking water, wastewater systems, water pollution reduction and wetland protection. 

EPA made the announcement at its Pacific Southwest Region’s 25th Annual Tribal Conference held at the Viejas Casino and Resort in Alpine, Calif., and hosted by the San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians.

“This funding will help tribes provide safe drinking water to their communities and support environmental programs,” said Alexis Strauss, EPA’s Acting Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “These vital grants have a significant impact on the environment and quality of life in Indian Country.”

Tribes in Nevada will use the funds to help strengthen their water protection, solid waste and wastewater treatment programs, including cleanup of open dumps.

The Battle Mountain Band of Western Shoshone will develop a composting program that will run in conjunction with the Summer Youth Lunch Program during the summer of 2018. The youth workers will reduce solid waste by collecting food waste during the lunch hour, weighing it in their Environmental Building, and composting it.

The Fort McDermitt Paiute and Shoshone Tribes of the Fort McDermitt Indian Reservation will use grant funds to purchase two large dumpsters and two collection centers for separation of garbage and recyclables to address a lack of solid waste facilities on their lands. The tribes will also purchase a truck and trailer and oil recycling containers to haul recyclables and used motor oil to off-site recycling centers.

Prior EPA funds supported the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe in constructing wetlands that prevent pollution from entering the Truckee River from nearby agricultural drains. The project leveraged additional federal and state resources to reduce nutrients and other contaminants and improve aquatic resources in the river. The Truckee River flows 31 miles through the reservation before reaching Pyramid Lake. 

The EPA’s Pacific Southwest Region is home to 148 tribal nations and contains half of all tribal lands nationwide. Indian Country in California, Arizona and Nevada is about equal in size to the six New England states. 

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