EPA Selects Arizona Department of Environmental Quality for $296K Pollution Prevention Grant Funded by Bipartisan Infrastructure Law
Grant focuses on Automotive Maintenance and Repair Training in Underserved Communities
PHOENIX - Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the selection of the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) to receive a $296,544 pollution prevention (P2) grant made possible by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The P2 grants being awarded across the U.S. will allow states and Tribes to help businesses develop practices to prevent or reduce pollution before it is even created, while also reducing business and liability costs.
The ADEQ Pollution Prevention Program proposes to expand existing outreach activities and technical assistance by designing an online training program and resource center for the automotive manufacturing and maintenance industry in Arizona. The goal is to provide targeted outreach, assistance, and training to this industry to reduce waste and increase sustainability with a special focus on Arizona’s underserved communities.
“This grant made possible by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will enhance ADEQ’s efforts to protect Arizona communities and auto industry employees from hazardous pollution,” said EPA Regional Administrator Martha Guzman. "Providing bilingual pollution prevention training will ultimately protect workers, reduce waste, conserve resources and fight climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”
"Based on ADEQ's inspections, there are concerns that repair shops may not be aware of how the environmental regulations apply to them," said Arizona Department of Environmental Quality Waste Programs Division Director Laura L. Malone. "This grant will help ADEQ bridge that gap by creating a free online portal along with outreach materials to train and educate employees. This is a great opportunity for our regulated community to see that ADEQ is a resource to assist them and for these facilities to maintain compliance with environmental regulations."
EPA’s P2 Program advances President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative, which aims to deliver at least 40 percent of the benefits of certain government programs to underserved communities. To broaden and diversify the applicant pool for this round of P2 grants, state and Tribal programs will not be required to provide matching funds, as is required by traditional P2 grants. Many of the grants awarded nationwide will support implementation of pollution prevention practices in Indian country.
The United States produces billions of pounds of pollution each year and spends billions of dollars per year controlling this pollution. Preventing pollution at the source, rather than managing waste after it is produced, advances a sustainable economic and environmental infrastructure. P2 can reduce exposure to toxic chemicals, conserve natural resources, and lower business costs, particularly costs associated with waste management, disposal and cleanup. These practices are essential for protecting health, improving environmental conditions in and around disadvantaged communities, and preserving natural resources like wetlands, groundwater sources, and other critical ecosystems.
Selected and awarded grantees will document and share P2 best practices they identify and develop through these grants so that others can replicate the practices and outcomes. Each selected grantee will develop at least one case study on P2 practices that are new or not widely known or adopted, for the benefit of other businesses or P2 technical assistance providers.
These grants are the first of five P2 grant programs over the next five years that will be funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Other forthcoming programs will encourage products, purchasing, and/or supply chains that are safer, more sustainable, and environmentally preferable, and will encourage businesses that are working in, or working with, underserved and disadvantaged communities to adopt P2 practices. Later this year, EPA also anticipates awarding traditional P2 grants administered by the agency for over 25 years.
EPA anticipates that it will award the grants once all legal and administrative requirements are satisfied. Grants supported with Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds will be fully funded at the time grants are awarded.
Read more about P2 and the P2 Grant Program.