PHILADELPHIA — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has selected a Delaware-based nonprofit to receive $497,861 to monitor and report on the effects of air pollution from industrial poultry operations in Princess Anne, Millsboro and Seaford.
Socially Responsible Agriculture Project (SRAP) of Claymont will partner with citizen groups “and use this information to create community-oriented solutions to improve public health outcomes for every stakeholder in the three communities,” according to the EPA.
SRAP has been at work for over 20 years finding ways to protect resident health and wellbeing from damage caused by industrial livestock operations and “to advocate for a food system built on regenerative practices, justice, democracy and resilience,” according to its website.
The EPA’s latest award benefits 132 air monitoring projects in 37 states, including one managed by the Maryland Department of the Environment which is receiving the same grant amount as SRAP.
The MDE plans to work with community partnerships in Cheverly, Curtis Bay, Baltimore and Turner Station to monitor and mitigate cumulative air pollution concentrations in those communities.
These initiatives are promoted through President Joe Biden’s Justice40 Initiative and the EPA selected projects that are “focused on communities that are underserved, historically marginalized, and overburdened by pollution.”
“Funding for this project will finally give communities, some who for years have been overburdened by polluted air and other environmental insults, the data and information needed to better understand their local air quality and have a voice for real change,” said EPA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Adam Ortiz.
“This air monitoring work will also be useful as communities and local leaders work to revitalize neighborhoods and grow the local economy.”
Funding was through the Inflation Reduction Act and American Rescue Plan, both of which were supported by Maryland’s Democratic congressional delegation.
“Monitoring air pollution will inform and strengthen our efforts to protect clean air for all Marylanders, especially those disproportionately impacted by environmental contaminants,” said Congressman John Sarbanes. “Team Maryland has long worked to improve air quality and protect public health in our state.”
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