environmental protection agency

Rhode Island has received $1 million dollars from the Environmental Protection Agency to help clean up local brownfields; areas contaminated by toxic substances.  The money will go toward cleaning up areas in Pawtucket, Central Falls and Providence.  

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

The head of the Environmental Protection Agency’s New England region is in Rhode Island Wednesday. Curt Spalding will survey parts of the state, to see which are at risk to storms and increased sea level rise.

For two days, the EPA’s Curt Spalding will tour areas in Westerly, South Kingstown, North Kingstown and Warwick. The idea behind the tour is twofold: to examine at-risk areas, and share ideas and existing tools for how to plan for rising seas and more violent storms.

Every Rhode Island county with an air quality monitoring device had slightly more smoggy days this year compared to last year, according to a report issued this year by the American Lung Association. The state will likely see those smoggy days dwindle in the future.

Rhode Island is one of eight states that are petitioning the Environmental Protection Agency for protection from out-of-state polluters.

The multi-state action is directed at Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. 

The petition cites decades of inaction by these so-called ‘upwind’ states and asks the EPA to require them to join a compact of states committed to reducing pollution.

Backers of a plastic bag ban have been busy collecting petition signatures this summer.  Environment Rhode Island says it has amassed ten thousand signatures urging the General Assembly to take up the issue once again. 

Rhode Island would have become the first state in the country to ban plastic grocery bags under a bill that died in the last legislative session.   Channing Jones of Environment Rhode Island says they are not deterred by their out-of-the-gate loss.

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