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Tuesday, October 4, 2016

LGEAN Update is a biweekly newsletter published by the International City/County Management Association. Its purpose is to keep you up to date on the latest environmental information of interest to local governments.



As part of the Obama Administration’s commitment to strengthen America’s climate resilience, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released an updated online climate change risk assessment tool that assists users in designing adaptation plans based on the types of threats confronting their communities. EPA’s Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool (CREAT) is designed for water utilities. “Water utilities operate on the front lines of climate change and face the challenges of increased drought, flooding and sea level rise. EPA is working to strengthen America’s communities by providing climate preparedness tools like CREAT that local leaders can use to make smart decisions,” said Joel Beauvais, deputy assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Water. In its updated version, CREAT presents information in a series of intuitive modules, provides climate change projection data, and presents monetized risk results. CREAT’s climate projection map illustrates future climate scenarios including precipitation intensity for a 100-year storm or the number of days per year with temperatures above 100ºF. With this powerful information, utility owners and operators can better prepare for the impacts of climate change. Learn more here.


Funding Opportunity: Environmental Health Cohorts Maintenance and Infrastructure (R24)
Applications from eligible entities are currently being accepted by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) to provide support for the maintenance of existing environmental epidemiology cohorts and their associated biorepositories; for the collection or development of additional measures; to facilitate follow-up of study participants especially during key windows of susceptibility, and to provide a structure to facilitate broader sharing of data and resources with the scientific community. The goal of this program is to provide stability to existing EECs by supporting the necessary infrastructure to retain trained field personnel essential to continue ongoing longitudinal data collection, to follow-up study participants, and to preserve the integrity and quality of specimen collection. Each resource grant is expected to focus on activities that will enable efficient planning and operation of cohorts in preparation to (1) maintain the scientific integrity of the resource and community engagement; (2) prepare for future scientific needs and direction; (3) promote engagement of new disciplines in the field; and (4) facilitate scientific collaborations across cohorts. For more information, click here.

Funding Opportunity Number: RFA-ES-16-004
Closing Date: October 10, 2016 at 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization
For questions, contact Barbara Gittleman at

Funding Opportunity: Smart City Air Challenge
EPA is challenging communities across the country to collect data using hundreds of air quality sensors as part of the Smart City Air Challenge. The agency is offering up to $40,000 apiece to two communities to help them develop and implement plans for collecting and sharing data from air quality sensors. To qualify for the challenge, communities will need to submit plans for deploying hundreds of air quality sensors and managing the data they collect. The award money only covers part of the program costs, so communities will need to partner with sensor manufacturers, data management companies or others to get resources and expertise to implement their plans. For more information, click here.

Closing Date: October 28, 2016 at 4:00 PM ET

Funding Opportunity: National Internet-based On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) Information Exchange
Applications from eligible entities are currently being accepted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to maintain, update, and improve an Internet-based information clearinghouse to facilitate the accurate and timely exchange of technical information related to vehicle on-board diagnostics (OBD) testing with state inspection and maintenance (I/M) programs, the automotive industry, and the general public. This project will also serve automotive technicians by providing current information about OBD technology, OBD training opportunities, OBD diagnostic tool vendors, and public outreach materials. For more information, click here.

Funding Opportunity Number: EPA-OAR-OTAQ-16-08
Closing Date: October 28, 2016 at 4:00 PM ET
For questions, contact Dave Sosnowski at

Funding Opportunity: Technical Assistance to Tribal Communities Addressing Brownfields
The EPA’s Office of Brownfields and Land Revitalization (OBLR) is soliciting proposals from eligible entities to provide technical assistance to increase the capacity of tribal governments to build sustainable brownfield programs and to establish, manage, and administer tribal CERCLA 128(a) response programs. General Tribal Response Programs address brownfields on tribal lands, minimize the actual and perceived health risks associated with contamination from brownfield properties, and strengthen partnerships between tribal entities, governmental, and non-governmental organizations engage in brownfields redevelopment. The EPA is looking for proposals that directly benefit tribal governments in supporting them as they build sustainable brownfield programs, and establish and enhance their Tribal Response Programs by conducting and overseeing brownfields assessment and cleanup. For more information, click here.

Funding Opportunity Number: EPA-OLEM-OBLR-16-06
Closing Date: October 31, 2016 at 11:59 PM ET
For questions, contact Rachel Lentz at

Funding Opportunity: Pesticide Safety Education Funds Management Progra
The EPA is soliciting proposals from eligible applicants to manage a Pesticide Safety Education Funds Management Program (PSEFMP). Specifically, EPA is soliciting proposals from eligible applicants to establish and administer a national subaward program in support of pesticide applicator education and training for certified of restricted use pesticides. Pesticide applicator education and training materials and programs are available to help people prepare for certification exams and to maintain certification through continuing education. For more information, click here.

Funding Opportunity Number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-001
Closing Date: October 31, 2016 at 11:59 PM ET
For questions, contact Jeanne Kasai at

Funding Opportunity: Fiscal Year 2017 National Environmental Information Exchange Network Grant Program
The Exchange Network Grant Program provides funding to states, territories and federally recognized Indian tribes to support the development of the Environmental Information Exchange Network (EIEN). The primary outcome expected from Exchange Network assistance agreements is improved access to, and exchange of, high-quality environmental data from public and private sector sources. Each fiscal year, EPA expects to award about $9 million to approximately 30 to 40 EIEN projects; awards for each project can range between $50,000 and $300,000. EPA may make a limited number of awards to collaborative, partnership assistance agreements. Budgets for these projects cannot exceed $500,000. The exact number of awarded grants will depend on: the final amount of EPA’s appropriation for the grant program, the number of applications submitted to EPA by the application deadline, the amounts of proposed budgets, and the outcome of application reviews. Applications should demonstrate support for and results toward EIEN program priorities. For more information, click here.

Funding Opportunity Number: EPA-OEI-17-01
Closing Date: November 18, 2016
For questions, contact Salena Reynolds at


Conference: Water and Health Conference:
Where Science Meets Policy
Dates: October 10-14, 2016
Location: Chapel Hill, NC
The 2016 Water and Health Conference: Where Science Meets Policy, organized by The Water Institute at UNC, considers drinking water supply, sanitation, hygiene and water resources in both the developing and developed worlds with a strong public health emphasis. For more information and to register, click here.

Webinar: Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) Program
Date: October 13, 2016
Time: 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM ET

For almost 30 years, EPA's Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) has been the source for this critical information about toxic chemicals that industrial facilities use and release into the environment. Nearly two-thirds of the U.S. population lives within three miles of a TRI facility…so what’s going on in your neighborhood? Join EPA for Introduction to TRI, a webinar intended for anyone interested in learning about the basics of the TRI Program. During this webinar, participants will learn about: The right-to-know principle and the basics of the TRI Program; How to find TRI data for a specific community or other geographic location; How TRI can help promote pollution prevention; What TRI can tell you about chemical hazards and risks. For more information and to register, click here.

Webinar: Integrating Climate Change Resilience into Transportation Asset Management
Date: October 13, 2016
Time: 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM ET
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Transportation Research Board (TRB) will conduct a webinar on Thursday, October 13, 2016 from 2:00PM to 4:00PM ET that highlights some of the common themes that emerged from the 11th National Conference on Transportation Asset Management, which took place July 10-12, 2016 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Several sessions focused on integrating climate change and extreme weather event resilience approaches into transportation asset management. This webinar was organized by the TRB Standing Committee on Transportation Asset Management. Participants must register in advance of the webinar, and there is a fee for non-TRB Sponsor or non-TRB Sustaining Affiliate employees. For more information and to register, click here.

Conference: Potable Reuse Summit
Dates: October 17-18, 2016
Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Augmenting surface water and groundwater with reclaimed water provides a sustainable pathway to meeting burgeoning environmental and societal challenges to global water supplies. On October 17-18, 2016, WateReuse will present a Potable Reuse Summit which will bring together leading experts from the U.S. to discuss critical factors in the success of potable reuse projects, including addressing regulatory issues, demonstrating environmental and economic viability, and enhancing public understanding and acceptance. Case studies and panel discussions will enable participants to discuss challenges, lessons learned and successes of potable reuse projects and hear about recent and ongoing research related to potable reuse. For more information and to register, click here.

Webinar: Navigating the Intersection: Western Water, Climate Change & Public Health
Date: October 26, 2016
Time: 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM ET
Whether you’re a water utility manager in Colorado, a public health director in California, or a water justice activist in Arizona, climate-driven changes in western water are already having direct impacts on public health. What lies ahead and how do we work together? For more information and to register, click here.

Conference: Urban Resilience & Sustainability
Date: November 4, 2016
Location: New Haven, CT
On Friday, Nov. 4, the Hixon Center for Urban Ecology at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies will host its annual conference on Urban Resilience & Sustainability. The event in New Haven, Conn., is free, but registration is required. The panels will examine challenges and opportunities for sustainability and resilience at the municipal level. Three panel discussions will include: Panel I: Challenges and Opportunities for Urban Sustainability: Results from the 2016 National Academy Report Moderator Karen Seto. Panel II: Building Urban Resilience: How are Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities addressing stresses and preparing for shocks? Moderator Brad Gentry. Panel III: Bridging Science and Management to Achieve Sustainability Moderator Virginia Chapman. For more information and to register, click here.


Six Universities Get EPA Support to Research Water Quality
September 27 - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced funding to six universities to work with local communities to better understand the economic value of water quality. "Clean water is a cornerstone of a healthy community. Many communities face challenging decisions about investing in the protection of water resources," said Thomas Burke, EPA science advisory and deputy assistant administrator of EPA’s Office of Research and Development. "These grants will help measure the costs and benefits of improving water quality, an important step toward protecting the environment and human health." Chemical and microbial contaminants continue to reduce the quality of our water, and often at a rate that outpaces water quality improvements from regulatory actions. The research grants announced will help communities and experts conduct benefit-cost analyses for actions that protect our waterways. This research will also provide a critical link between water quality science and the monetary value of the services that healthy waterways provide, including recreational uses. Learn more here.

When It Comes to Waste, San Francisco Isn't As Green As It Thinks
September 27 - It's easy for politicians to set goals for their cities. It's far, far harder to achieve them. Take San Francisco's much-heralded goal of sending absolutely no garbage to landfills by the year 2020. In a composted nutshell? It's nowhere near happening. Back in 2003 when the city's Commission on the Environment, at the urging of Mayor Willie Brown and the entire Board of Supervisors, set that goal, it was considered achievable. But 13 years later, and just four years from the goal date, San Francisco continues to throw away huge amounts of garbage. The city's waste has averaged 1,463 tons every workday over the past year, according to Recology, the city's trash collector. There's no penalty for not meeting the target other than, of course, a swelling landfill that's bad for the environment and a big dent in San Francisco's reputation as one of the greenest cities in the world. Learn more here.

EPA Announces Initiatives To Advance Tribal Sovereignty, Expand Environmental Observer Network
September 26 - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced an interagency agreement on tribal treaty rights and other initiatives designed to advance tribal sovereignty and self-determination. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy announced this and other initiatives to improve human health and the environment on Indian reservations in remarks at the White House Tribal Nations Conference in Washington. Under the Constitution, treaties are part of the supreme law of the land, with the same legal force and effect as federal statutes. That’s why EPA announced a Memorandum of Understanding on interagency coordination and collaboration to advance protection of tribal treaty and similar rights related to natural resources affected by agency decisions. This MOU stems in part from EPA’s recent “Guidance for Discussing Tribal Treaty Rights,” an effort to encourage consideration of treaty rights in the agency’s consultation policy. The memorandum will be available for signature by federal agencies on a rolling basis. The U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Department of the Interior, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation have so far signed the MOU, in addition to EPA. Learn more here.

Energy Department Launches Better Communities Alliance to Ignite Clean Energy Action in Cities and Counties Nationwide
September 26 - The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is launching the Better Communities Alliance (BCA), a new collaborative effort among 60 local governments, philanthropies, nonprofit organizations, and leading private companies to accelerate local clean energy progress across the country. The BCA was announced today by the White House during Smart Cities Week. With 87% of total U.S. energy to be consumed in cities by 2030, America's local governments are stepping up to the challenge. Through the BCA, city and county leaders are making commitments to reduce the wasted energy in homes and buildings, expand renewable energy and sustainable transportation options for their residents and businesses, harness new energy-saving technologies, and invest in resilient power systems and community infrastructure. As part of the Better Buildings Initiative, the BCA will deliver new clean energy resources, technical assistance, and facilitate collaboration between public and private partners by making it easier for participants to connect and exchange ideas. Learn more here.

Wind Farm Brings New Life to Former Brownfield
September 19 - It’s no secret that parts of U.S. manufacturing have struggled over the last several decades. And while American wind power is helping to bring back some of it back, in Lackawana, N.Y., wind energy is helping in a different way. Today, the Steel Winds project sits on the bank of Lake Erie, on the site of a former Bethlehem Steel plant. After years of steel production, when the mill closed, it left the surrounding grounds badly polluted, otherwise known as a brownfield. For more than 20 years, the land was vacant and designated an Environmental Protection Agency superfund site. When the area was sufficiently cleaned, the 14 wind turbines comprising the Steel Winds project were installed in two phases, beginning in 2007. They generate enough electricity to power about 15,000 homes, and some Lackawana residents feel they represent a path forward for a city that has struggled through industrial decline. Learn more here.

Once Fringe Greening Ideas Now Key Part of Detroit Rebirth
September 3 - It wasn't so long ago in Detroit that proposals for bicycle lanes, urban farms, mass tree plantings and other alternative uses for urban land were viewed as soft-headed or even harmful. But today these ideas and others like them have gone mainstream. The latest example is Open Streets Detroit, which on two Sunday afternoons this fall will close a nearly four-mile stretch of Michigan Avenue and Vernor Highway to vehicle traffic. Neighbors will be able to stroll, bike, skateboard, practice yoga, listen to music, mingle and otherwise enjoy the streets without the traffic. The event is part of an international Open Streets movement, which involves a dozen cities around the world hosting traffic-free days with tens of thousands participating. Open Streets Detroit joins a roster of programs and practices increasingly redefining how we use our urban landscape. Learn more here.


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