FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 21, 2012
EPA Announces $3 Million In Environmental Job Training Grants
Grants provide job trainees opportunities to protect public health in their communities
WASHINGTON – Today at the Sewage and Water Board of New Orleans U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Assistant Administrator Mathy Stanislaus announced that EPA is awarding $3 million to 15 grantees through the Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training (EWDJT) program. The grants will recruit, train, and place unemployed individuals in jobs that address environmental challenges in their communities. These investments will protect the health of local communities by targeting economically disadvantaged neighborhoods where environmental cleanups and jobs are often most needed.
“People want and deserve both a healthier environment and greater economic opportunity,” said Mathy Stanislaus, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response. “This training program for environmental jobs has a proven track record. Approximately 71 percent of graduates find employment in environmental fields that serve local communities.”
EPA’s Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program seeks to stimulate the partnership development among local workforce investment boards, community-based organizations, governmental entities, and academic institutions. The program also helps to enhance the skills and the availability of local labor while providing communities the flexibility to design training programs that meet their individual market’s demands and preferences.
The 15 grantees include: Groundwork Providence, Rhode Island – Plans to train a minimum of 54 students, and place at least 45 graduates in environmental jobs. Among others.
Since 1998, EPA has awarded more than $42 million under the Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program. As of June 2012, approximately 10,300 individuals had completed training and approximately 7,300 obtained employment in the environmental field, with an average starting hourly wage of $14.12. The development of this green workforce will allow the trainees to develop skills that will make them competitive in the construction and redevelopment fields.
Graduates of the program are equipped with skills and certifications in various environmental fields including lead and asbestos abatement, environmental site sampling, construction and demolition debris recycling, underground storage tank removal, ecological restoration, and green building techniques. Graduates use these skills to improve the environment and people’s health while supporting economic development in their communities.
More information on environmental workforce development and job training grants: http://www.epa.gov/brownfields/pilot_grants.htm