UA SBRP Receives US EPA Pollution Prevention Grant

June 17, 2008

Dr. Eric Betterton, Denise Moreno Ramirez and Monica Ramirez, University of Arizona Superfund Basic Research Program (UA SBRP) and Ann Marie Wolf, Sonora Environmental Research Institute, Inc. (SERI) received a US EPA Pollution Prevention (P2) grant. The P2 project’s purpose is to reduce the amount of hazardous substances entering the environment, conserve energy and water, and improve the environmental health of the community. The goals are: (1) to establish a comprehensive multimedia P2 training program for trained community health advocates (promotoras); (2) to conduct a minimum of 900 business visits by promotoras that result in measurable P2 outcomes; (3) to provide a minimum of 8 workshops that focus on industry-specific source reduction methods and help eliminate the barriers to implementation of P2 programs; and (4) to create community leaders in P2 and thereby strengthen the community's ability to make informed environmental health improvement choices and  participate in long-term solutions.

The UA SBRP has partnered with SERI to expand SERI’s successful Community Assist of Southern Arizona (CASA) program to now include a P2 program for businesses. CASA partners with neighborhoods that are under economic, environmental, and health stress and helps determine the environmental risks to which the neighborhoods are exposed and actions to be taken to reduce those risks. CASA’s primary focus has been home visits, however, over the past year, trained community health advocates (promotoras) have been visiting businesses as well to discuss pollution prevention measures. The UA SBRP has been instrumental in the development of CASA by serving on their advisory board, providing training for the promotoras in Toxicology and Environmental Science, and providing technical expertise. Now with the P2 grant, the UA SBRP will provide trainings for the promotoras that will equip them to effectively communicate pollution prevention and source reduction strategies to the following business sectors: auto maintenance, auto body paint and repair, printing, plating, surface coating, nail and hair salons, woodworking and plastic materials and resins. In addition, the UA SBRP will be assisting in the 8 workshops and development of P2 packets for local Tucson businesses on industry-specific P2 measures.

Please join the UA SBRP in congratulating Dr. Eric Betterton, Denise Moreno Ramirez, Monica Ramirez, and Ann Marie Wolf.