Press release

$700K coming Wiscasset’s way for Birch Point cleanup

Fri, 05/26/2023 - 12:00pm

    May 25, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced $16,222,850 from President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda to expedite the assessment and cleanup of brownfields sites in Maine – including $700,000 for a Wiscasset one – while advancing environmental justice.

    Wiscasset has been picked to receive a $700,000 Brownfields Cleanup Grant. Grant funds will be used to clean up the 4.5-acre North Point Fill Area at the northern tip of the Birch Point Peninsula, which is contaminated with inorganic contaminants and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Grant funds also will be used to develop outreach materials and public involvement activities.

    EPA selected 14 communities in Maine to receive 14 grants totaling $10,222,850 in competitive EPA Brownfields funding through the Multipurpose, Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund, and Cleanup (MARC) Grant programs. Thanks to the historic boost from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, this is the largest ever funding awarded in the history of the EPA’s Brownfields MARC Grant programs. In addition, the agency is announcing $6,000,000 in non-competitive supplemental funding to two successful existing Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) Grant programs to help expedite their continued work at sites in their area by extending the capacity of the programs to provide more funding for additional cleanups.

    These investments are part of President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda to grow the American economy from the bottom up and middle-out – from rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure, to driving over $470 billion in private sector manufacturing and clean energy investments in the United States, to creating a manufacturing and innovation boom powered by good-paying jobs that do not require a four-year degree, to building a clean energy economy to combat climate change and make our communities more resilient.

    “We’re working across the country to revitalize what were once dangerous and polluted sites in overburdened communities into more sustainable and environmentally just places that serve as community assets. Thanks to President Biden’s historic investments in America, we’re moving further and faster than ever before to clean up contaminated sites, spur economic redevelopment, and deliver relief that so many communities have been waiting for,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “This critical wave of investments is the largest in Brownfields history and will accelerate our work to protect the people and the planet by transforming what was once blight into might.”

    “Congratulations to the 16 Maine organizations who will receive these new Brownfields grants this year,”said EPA New England Regional Administrator David W. Cash. “Thanks to the Biden-Harris Administration, EPA will be making the single largest investment in Brownfields in history. This funding will revitalize communities across New England, and jump start economic redevelopment and job creation in many of New England's hardest hit and underserved communities.”

    “This historic investment by the Biden-Harris Administration will benefit Maine’s environment and our economy,” said Gov. Janet Mills. “These resources will allow communities across the state to properly assess and clean up contaminated sites, paving the way for redevelopment that can create jobs and enhance our communities. I thank the Biden Administration for this investment, and the Maine Delegation for supporting the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that made additional funding possible.”

    “The EPA’s Brownfields Program has been an important resource for the health and success of Maine people,” said U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and U.S. Representatives Chellie Pingree and Jared Golden. “This significant investment will provide over a dozen communities the support they need to identify hazardous substances, clean up dangerous sites, and improve our environment. We look forward to seeing the positive impacts of this funding and how it will help Maine towns create new opportunities that can attract businesses and create good jobs.”