Improving Community Health through Land Reuse and Development

Uploaded by CDCStreamingHealth on 23.01.2013


Matt Hiester: Thank you all very much for logging on for today's webinar. My name is Matt Hiester. I'm with the Cadmus Group. I'm working in
partnership with CommunicateHealth to support CDCs National Center for Environmental Health and ATSDR. It's my pleasure to welcome you to
today's webinar, Improving Community Health through Land Reuse and Development.
We are very excited and honored to have two speakers with us today, Laurel Berman who is ATSDR National Brownfield's coordinator and
Leann Bing who is ATSDR regional representative for Region 4.
So, as I said, we're very excited to have this webinar today and the purpose of the webinar is fourfold. One is to review the Brownfield's on
land reuse landscape and the public health's important role in the redevelopment process; to highlight the range of free resources that ATSDR
has available to help unique redevelopment needs; to showcase some community projects that are underway or that have already happened
that are improving health; and to describe actions that you can take to improve the health of your community.
You'll see the agenda for today's webinar. First, our speakers will provide an overview of the ATSDR Brownfield's and Land Reuse Initiative.
Then we'll talk about the role of public health in redevelopment projects. And then we'll spend some time discussing ATSDR's approach to this
initiative and there are several factors that we'll touch on including promoting the 10 percent health work, providing free tools and resources
and what some of those are, showcasing a few models for success, supporting community health pilots, informing policy makers and then
we'll talk about actions that ATSDR is taking and some actions that you can take in your community and then we'll try and leave some
time at the end for an interactive question-and-answer session.
Questions to consider. These are things that as you're hearing the speakers talk today, these are things we'd like for you to keep in mind and think
about how the information you're hearing might help you in advancing your own program and goals. So it applies to things that you should listen
for or what did you hear about ATSDR's initiative that you want to learn more about; what tools and resources did you hear that you may already be
using in your efforts; and maybe even more importantly, what tools and resources did you hear about that you didn't know about before and
that you'd like to incorporate into your program; how can you engage to regional ATSDR representatives and help them help you improve
public health considerations into your projects; and finally, what are the two or three steps that you'll take as a result of this webinar – what is it
that you're going to do with the information that you learn today?
As you're listening to today's speakers, think about what are the couple things that you might
do with this information to help you advance your program.
So we'd like to start with a polling question. As I mentioned before, one of the ways we want to gauge your familiarity with the topic is through
polling questions. So on your screen, you'll see a polling question that's going to get at how familiar you are with the ATSDR's land reuse initiative.
You'll see five answer choices – very familiar, I use their tools in all my projects; somewhat familiar, I know what they offer and we use some
of their tools; not very familiar, you know about it but you don't use the resources; you're unfamiliar, this is your first introduction to the initiative; or not
applicable. Hopefully no one is going to choose not applicable, but if you do, that's OK.
So folks can get a sense of how people voted, you'll see on your screen a bar graph showing how folks voted so, it looks like a few of you
are very familiar with the initiative, you use some of the tools in your project routinely. A good portion, about 21 percent, is somewhat familiar.
You're using some of the information and tools. About a third of you are not at all that familiar, and almost half of you are unfamiliar with the initiative.
That's great information to know. Part of the reason we're doing this webinar is to really try and get this information out to folks, so the fact
that half of you aren't all that familiar with the initiative, that means this is a good reason to do this webinar. Thank you all for sharing that.
And I'd like to follow up with one additional polling question. Obviously, ATSDR's focus that you hear is on public health and redevelopment
projects. So, I'd like to gauge for the folks on the phone, how important is public health in your project that you – if you do – if you are involved in
redevelopment project, how important is public health in your projects?
As you see the answer choices - A, very important, it's critical for every project; B, it's important and you're trying at least consider
public health; C, not very important, you know it's important but you don't feel like you have the time, resources or interest to address it; D, you don't
think it's important, you rely on someone else to address that; or E, because of the role that you play, maybe this isn't applicable to you.
OK, so almost 60 percent say that public health is very important, it's a critical component of every project. That's great to hear. I'm sure our
speakers from ATSDR are smiling to hear that. 30 percent of you think it's important; you at least try and consider the public health aspects.
A small percentage, around 3 percent, you just don't feel like you've got the time, resources or interest or maybe it isn't applicable to your
projects. And around 11 percent of you, because of the nature of the work you do, the public health side isn't applicable to your work.
Thank you all very much. At this point, I would like to turn over our presentation to Leann Bing, the
ATSDR Brownfield's regional coordinator for Region 4.
Leann Bing : Hi. This is Leann Bing from ATSDR, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. I know that's a mouthful so please let's
just say ATSDR. We're the federal agency charged with preventing harmful exposures and diseases related to toxic substances. And on the
right hand corner, you can see where we’re co-located with EPA. We also have an office in Alaska and D.C. and in Libby, Montana.
ATSDR helps people understand if there's a contaminated site and how it could affect their health and the health of their community. We
could help you to determine if there's residual from handmade or physical hazards that are public health hazards or if they're not.
We can make recommendations for you about what you can do to protect your health.
We can help you work with the community to find out overall health issues and we can help you work with the community to determine how
redevelopment can address other health issues in your community.
There are a lot of ways that we can help you address your health concerns related directly to the site and to help you address your health
disparities in your community by including health in your redevelopment. We have an arsenal of tools and trainings that is free ranging from site
tools, trainings, and health education. We have videos, you know, Leading Change folks for a successful community health projects.
American College of Medical Toxicologists and the pediatric environmental health specialty units and we have cooperative agreement with State
Health Departments with the local toxicologists and health professionals that could be in your state.
And we have staff in all of our 10 regional offices and our other satellite offices – toxicologists, sanitarians, nurses, doctors, environmental
health specialists, environmental engineers, etc. And you can contact us with that email address up on your screen at
In addition to cleanup of the site – the site levels and preventing exposure to contaminants or physical hazards, that's kind of our main bread
and butter. There are a few examples to some of the success of communities that had been addressing health disparities. One of them was
like redeveloping a brownfield to a health center to address health disparities in their areas. They did that with brownfields funding, with other funding
and with the National Health Center Service Corps.
Another idea was redeveloping a landfill to a community park. Another one, we've seen is installing a police station at a former gas station.
Crime was reduced over 70 percent in that area. So another way is increasing economic opportunities including, you know, property
values, adult education. There are many ways that you can use your brownfields sites to improve health in your area.
So why do you need health? Chances are, health is going to be involved in some way or fashion and you want to have them up front. For one
thing, they're an unbiased partner. If they're getting perceived contamination, but not really any contamination, they can help you reassure
your community when there are not any health hazards.
If there is real contamination, you want them there at your table to help you address the contamination to make sure that any exposures
are prevented. And they're just a resource to help improve the overall health of your community. They have all the tools for health education, risk
communication, community involvement, and health assessment. So getting your local health agency involved with their health expertise or
ATSDR is one way to improve the health in your community.
This is a map of all the places where we were engaged on formerly contaminated sites. The little red dots are health assessment sites, the
blue ones are community health projects for brownfields and land reuse sites, and the gray
dots were all of the other brownfield sites in the nation.
Matt Hiester: Before we move on to the next slide, we want to ask another polling question. Before I ask that question, I wanted to do two
things. One, apologies to folks if you're hearing beeps on the phones. It's folks who joined the call
late. Hopefully most folks have joined at this point and that will be kept to a minimum.
So on your screen, you see the next polling question. We're going to go ahead and open that and this is – several of you mentioned or a lot of
you indicated that public health considerations are very important in your redevelopment projects and so, I want to get a sense of how many of you
coordinate with your local health agency on redevelopment projects. We'll go ahead and close that poll? And it looks like about 40 percent
of you do in fact coordinate with your local health agencies or departments on the redevelopment work that you do. About 13 percent of you aren't
sure. It may happen, it may not; you're not quite sure. And around 37 percent, again, because the
nature of what you do, it may just not be applicable.
Thank you all for answering that poll. We're going to move on to our next presenter's slide and I believe, Leann, that's you again.
Leann Bing: Yes, that's me. So what is the role of public redevelopment project in protecting and improving community health?
Communities, EPA, state and local agencies have requested our assistance at approximately 600 brownfield sites. One way of helping is health
assessments. With the health assessments, we assess the health impact at the sites using the best science, teaching departments if people are
exposed, how they are exposed and if the exposure is harmful to health, now, in the past or possibly in the future depending on how the site is
redeveloped. We definitely make categories of health threats, from no apparent threat at this time to those that are potentially a health threat.
Out of these 600 sites, approximately 40 percent posed a public health hazard to individuals that came in contact, that could come in contact with
the residual contamination or potential hazards that remain on the properties. So we strongly encourage you to have your local agency, health
agency involved to see if the residual contamination at your site is a health threat.
These are some of our worst case scenarios. On your left is a mercury vapor lamp factory in New Jersey that was converted to residences.
There were pools of elemental mercury that were found in the building. The elements of mercury drops were identified in the fourth floor residential
units and the mercury was located on their stoves and on their counters. The mercury was at a high enough level and they were unable to
get it down lowered to the residents or to relocate as soon as possible. The building was declared
as imminent health threat hazard and then condemned by the city.
On your right is a picture of a child playing in the dirt. A childcare center was redeveloped next to a dry cleaner. There were high levels of
tetrafluoroethylene. ATSDR recommended to inform the parents and the workers of the findings to conduct more samplings, locate the source of
contamination into the childcare center and then eliminate the exposure. That was the result from the health assessment.
The Philadelphia Department of Health was engaged. The Philadelphia Department of Health instructed the dry cleaner to control their
emissions in the dry cleaners and change their cleaning agents that they were using. Additionally, the City of Philadelphia passed an
ordinance to enhance the protection of public health for establishments co-located with dry
cleaning operations. They include increase monitoring and corrective actions.
Why do these happen? Not every redevelopment site has a loan or grant that requires a Phase 1 site assessment or any kind of site assessment.
And not all site assessments are equal in value. Sometimes the environmental site assessment does not address a community's concern about
health risks with the residual contamination or the institutional controls of identifying all the public health hazard issues.
If the public has issues that are not identified in the contaminated site, there could be new exposures after redevelopment.
Sometimes there’s budget cuts. Public health can be and are involved in planning healthy communities successfully, improving community
health overall. And it serves as a credible source of information for a community unfortunately in today's economic atmosphere, local state and
health departments are underfunded and understaffed. So ATSDR is working with the health entities and the communities to prevent
exposures and promote overall community health.
Matt Hiester: At this point, I'm going to turn the presentation over to our next speaker, Laurel Berman, who is the National Brownfield's
coordinator. Laurel? Laurel Berman: Yes. Hello, everyone. This is
Laurel Berman. On my screen, the slide has just loaded, so I'm going to just pause for a moment and say that we're on slide 21.
And I want to pick up from where Leann has left off where Leann sort of provided a big picture
about Brownfield's land reuse and the need for public health involvement.
I want to point out first that when we talked about Brownfields and land reuse sites is based on our experience with those 600 or so health
consultations or assessments that we performed over the years. This made us realize that when you have a Brownfield site, which is a site that
meets the EPA definition of the Brownfield or a land reuse site which includes those EPA sites but also any sites eligible for reuse or
redevelopment, the term most used by local health agencies is land reuse, so we tried to tie to that land reuse term.
But what we see in many of our communities is that we have multiple land reuse sites, multiple brownfields which can potentially have multiple
impacts on the population. So we've developed a multi-pronged approach to address these multiple
impacts. We have six basic steps that help us shape our program.
We promote the 10 percent health award which is a health monitoring award that is allocated within the Brownfield's law to Brownfields funding.
We provide free tools and resources. We showcase models of success from across the U.S. We support community health pilots
when we have funding available or we provide in-kind assistance on these pilots.
We inform policy makers - things like the lowering of the blood lead level at which primary intervention occurs, or school siting, daycare
siting guidelines. And we promote action by taking next steps.
I will address our first step which is to promote the 10 percent health award. ATSDR works with the EPA Brownfield's program to include an
allocation for 10 percent of a Brownfields grant whether it's assessment or cleanup that could be allocated for community health projects.
So we see a pictorial version of that 10 percent award. What we're encouraged about is we are starting to see more communities beginning to
allocate funding for community health monitoring. That is awarded in the Brownfield law; it's community health projects associated with land
reuse. So we're encouraged to see more projects starting and we'd like to provide
examples of these projects to encourage more to happen.
Matt Hiester: The next slide is a polling question. As Laurel just discussed the 10% monitoring in the assessment grants. We want to get a sense
of if folks are taking advantage of that. It looks like about 8% of you are taking advantage of that 10% award which is great. I’m sure folks would love to
see that number increase. Twenty-eight percent of your aren’t. Twenty-five percent of you aren’t sure. That might be something in terms of
thinking about those action steps that are going to take after this webinar. You might want to see if you can find out if you are or not.
And if you are not, look into how you might do that. And, for about 40% of you, because of the nature of the work you do, it’s not applicable.
Thanks everybody. We’re going to go ahead and turn it back over to Laurel.
Laurel Berman: Our second step in our multi-pronged approach is to provide free tools and resources. Over the past several years, we
developed tools and resources for local health and for communities to engage in reuse decisions. And by communities, we mean what
we call the development community, that's anybody that has an interest in the redevelopment of a particular area.
So the community can range from a resident, to a high school student, a college student, an urban planner, a developer,
or an environmental consultant as well as people in regulatory agencies.
I will discuss one of our first resources that we have available. The full name of this is the ATSDR Brownfields Land Revitalization Action
Model. And we used the term revitalization because in a down economy, often, there's not a lot of redevelopment money, but there is a lot of
will towards revitalizing the community which in turn can spur economic development.
The Action Model is a way to establish a baseline of overall community health status in a community from a population of 200 people on up
to 90,000 people. We've applied this in several projects across the country. It's a very, very flexible framework. It's a four-step framework;
we call it the Four-step Action Model and it’s grassroots so it can be conducted at the community level and it's designed to foster
dialogue, communication, and vision among the diverse members of the development community
– all those folks that have a vested interest in revitalization of an area.
The Action Model creates a framework to assess the impacts of redevelopment on public health. And one of our goals is to achieve a positive,
sustainable improvement in overall community health. And we make it measurable. The fourth step of this model is can we measure change,
which is very important. We often do not have indicators of community health. Even in the Brownfields realm, we do not have many
indicators beyond number of jobs created, number of sites remediated, number of acres put back into productive reuse.
So we begin to broaden what are the things that we can measure as redevelopment occurs.
Projects from across the country are using the Action Model. Many are in the Midwest where we have a very large percentage of reuse sites. We
also have projects in Oregon and several in New York. When we encouraged, we hope that there will be projects in your communities as well.
One of our second tools is called the ATSDR Brownfields Land Reuse Site Tool. This tool is a rapid site assessment multiple chemical
exposure and dose calculator tool. So users of the tool can assess a site by past or future use, institutional controls in place, the proximity of
sensitive populations, and how often the site is accessed. And, as you go through a series of questions in the screen, it's very user-friendly.
The Site Tool will create an inventory of the sites, so records can be stored for public inquiry of the sites; developers may want to know what were
the contamination issues at the site. And this is a good way to characterize and catalogue site
information as well as assisting rapid response to inquiries. We can also catalogue institutional controls, history of spills, types of contamination,
emergency response events, and also public health concerns that may have come in, for example, to the local health department.
And included in the tool is a site visit, the last tab on the right side of the picture says site visit.
I know it's small print, but it provides a checklist or a walk through for when you're looking at a site.
And I think probably the greatest value that this has is it can be synched with other systems or modified to work with other systems, such as
working with GIS. One community we worked with has integrated this with other databases so people can sort of have one-stop shopping to
learn about their community. Another community has entered over 400 potential brownfield sites into the tool which gives them a large picture of
where the brownfields are and what some of the sites that might be a priority are.
Gary Perlman (Region 1), who is likely on the call and is an integral member of this team along with Leann and myself, Gary was a lead author on a
paper about the Site Tool. Gary also created the tool. We like to joke that Gary creates, Leann breaks, and I promote it. That's pretty much how
our team works. This article is coming out in the next issue of the Journal of Environmental Health in mid-November.
Embedded in the Site tool is what we call the multiple Dose Calculator. These screenshots are probably difficult for you to see, but what we see
is that they are very simple to use. It's a dropdown menu. There are thousands of chemicals that can be queried in this. And the
exposure dose calculator helps the user evaluate exposures by defining the exposed populations, the exposure pathways.
There could be multiple exposure pathways such as inhalation or dermal contact or ingestion.
And it embeds standard and user-specified ingestion rates, sort of what we see in a risk assessment.
Doses can be calculated using different ranges of exposure parameters, 95 percent upper confidence limits for example, or the geometric
mean and the data can be tested for distribution in terms of normal or (log) normal distribution.
The take-home message here is that we can look at exposure pathways and calculate exposure doses very rapidly.
So if you have a licensed environmental professional working on your Brownfield site or risk assessor that's out in the field visiting the site
and you have some sampling information, it can be input into the dose calculator and very rapidly, you get – let's say it's a site that's next to a
school yard and kids are playing there for an hour every day and they're seven years old on average, we know the average body weight --and
very rapidly, you can assess that site for the chemicals of concern in terms of the risk to the people accessing the site. It is not a substitute
for risk assessment, but it's a good screening level calculation that can help prioritize how we address a site.
Another resource that we've developed, it's probably one of the most fun projects that we have for us is that we create community health
videos and they are very professional, commercial-quality of videos created by our videographer, Robert Safay, who's the director in
the Region 4 office where Leann works. We try to showcase where projects have been very successful in integrating health and
redevelopment and use these short videos that are 10 to 15 minutes to provide guidance for other communities. They can be very motivating.
We cover things like tribal – healing tribal lands; Baraboo, Wisconsin bringing riverfront redevelopment and the smaller community.
And at the lower right, you see Postville, Iowa. Very interesting projects in which across five counties a curriculum was developed for
preschool teachers to address lead exposures among children and try to reduce those
exposures. And this is a companion video that accompanies that curriculum.
These are all available on our webpage as well.
This is a project that we are still developing, but it's very close to being completed. We interviewed local health agencies about some of
our tools and resources several years ago. And one of the resources that they felt was needed was health education for local health departments
and environmental agencies. And so we have the basic components of environmental health education which is: what is toxicology?; learning
about risk communication and risk assessment; effects of epidemiology; and the use of GIS in land reuse and assessing hazardous sites.
We hope to distribute this training broadly, not just to local health agencies, but also to environmental agencies to distribute to their
grantees or the communities that they work with, especially in areas where the local health department may only be one or two people on
staff. This can help them take on what could be perceived as an additional burden in addition to
beach sanitation and swimming pool sanitation and help with disease outbreaks.
We're now expecting local health agencies to work on land reuse issues. And as Leann said earlier, why do this?
Because they will probably be pulled into it anyhow, so we like to give them the resources and tools to be prepared.
Matt Hiester: OK. We're going to ask another polling question. So let's open up the poll in a second. And this is really – as Laurel just
discussed there are a number of resources that ATSDR makes available to assist with these projects. And, Laurel went through them all
quickly and then there's a rich amount of materials that are on the website and available that you all can get access to.
But we're curious to see if folks use any of these tools and resources in your projects currently and which ones. So we'll take a few minutes and if
you could just select the choices on tools and resources that you may be using, we'd love to see that.
So, It looks like about 20 percent use the action model; about 26 percent are using either the site tool or the dose calculator; almost 20 percent
have used or familiar with the community health videos; about 8 percent of you, the Leading Change booklet; and 27 percent are accessing
the health education services that Laurel described.
Hopefully, as a result of this webinar and Laurel and Leann's presentations, you have a better sense of some of these tools and resources and
how they might help your program. So hopefully, if we were to do this webinar in a couple more weeks and ask folks the same question, we'd be
seeing closer to 100 percent for all those different tools and resources. But, it's nice to see that folks are familiar with these and are using them.
Laurel Berman: All right. Our third step in our multi-pronged approach is to showcase models of success.
Now, we cheated a little because polling question asked if you were using the Leading Change book, because it is a resource.
It's also one way we do showcase the very successful community projects.
This was our first book. We are now working on book two and book three and along with our videos, this is a way to show success stories that
show redevelopment where a variety of health related goals have been obtained whether it's increasing recreation or green space, affordable
housing, access to healthcare, community policy, community policing, education, revitalization of tribal lands, how jobs have been created, schools
in very dense urban areas; sort of been very innovative.
So we like to showcase how these communities have been successful. And also, we include lessons learned so that when other communities
look for guidance, they can emulate hopefully the positive parts and also learn from the lessons learned and not have to reinvent those.
And this, again, it's also available for download from our webpage.
Our fourth step is to promote community – to support and promote community health pilots.
To-date, we have funded and when we talk funding we have much less money than the EPA Brownfields program. I just want to be very, very
honest about that. But, we do a lot of in-kind work and we've also been able to fund at varying levels from probably as little as $20,000 or $30,000 on
up to $150,000. Now, there are 23 different community health projects that are related to land reuse and public health.
Primarily, the funding has gone to local and state health agencies, but cities are encouraged and locals are encouraged to be involved, to be part of
the brownfields process. And you can also – we've also seen one of our communities where the local health agency was involved.
They applied for brownfield funding and they said, had they not been involved in a project, they would not have done that.
So we support through funding, we also support through in-kind assistance. We frequently work
with EPA brownfields grantees to help address some of the health issues on sites.
One of the projects we supported was in Baraboo, Wisconsin which is about 40 to 45 miles Northwest of Madison, Wisconsin.
It's a smaller city of population about 12,000 and I'll give it as a case example. It's one of the
communities that did use the Action Model. They were very active.
We first launched our Action Model in Milwaukee's 30th Street Corridor, which had a population of 90,000 people. It was a dense urban area and
was described as an under-utilized and under-served area with large population of children with blood lead poisoning. Sixteen percent of the kids
had blood lead poisoning or elevated blood lead levels, loss of jobs, poor housing stock, lots of foreclosures.
And then we used the same model, the Action Model in Baraboo, Wisconsin to see if the model could be used on a different scale and under
much different conditions. So this is more of an idyllic smaller town, very environmentally focused. And what we found is the model was
successful and could be used and now has been used across the country.
But since Baraboo was our second project, what we found was the community developed 33 different measures of community health status.
And as we worked with the community, we found that very rapidly, between one to two years, we could measure positive changes in about one-
third of those 33 measurement indicators. These included the relocation of the waste transfer facility that you see on the upper left.
The facility was actually removed, dismantled, demolished and relocated off of the riverfront where there were concerns about leachate and
rodent problems. And one of the greatest concerns was odor. This was in a tourist area and also very close to a daycare center and there
were lot of odors associated with the garbage that was stored on site. That has since been relocated.
If you look to your right, there's a gazebo. What's in front of it is that was one of the main storm water outfalls into the Baraboo River from the
surrounding neighborhood, also very close to this waste transfer facility. Volunteers built a biofiltration pond. One of the volunteers is an
engineer and he learned how to build a biofiltration pond which they filled with 700 native species to trap pollutants and storm water before
they can enter the Baraboo River. So they're overall improving water quality.
Laurel Berman: The fifth step of our multi-pronged approach is to inform policy makers.
Leann Bing: Some of the things we've been working with our partners on in ATSDR Region 1 was collaborating with EPA to develop the
national school siting guidelines. These are voluntary school siting guidelines that can help school districts and community members
evaluate environmental factors to make the best possible school siting decisions.
Region 1 also collaborated with various people on the guidelines for daycare setting, too, which do not have the same kind of licensing requirements
as schools do. It does have some licensing requirements including the health impact of the facility, assessment for hazards conditions and
practices. But, they don't require environmental assessment of the childcare center or to prevent
a center from being a place on or next to a contaminated building.
Tarah Somers in Connecticut (Region 1) is working very hard on developing a safer daycare siting policy and Connecticut has a TAB daycare
training assessment and environmental risk program. There's also urban gardening, engagement projects in addition to the
Philadelphia soil kitchen. This was part of the Brownfields 2011 Conference and in collaboration with the EPA. The project ran 46 days and what
they did is they had people that could bring in their soil to be analyzed. They were given a free
information assessment and EPA analyzed for lead and cadmium at the same time.
Another partnership we had is with the lead exposure group that Laurel talked about earlier with the regional planning commission – refill
planning commission that this curriculum produced (physical dangers).
Laurel Berman: The last step in our multi-pronged approach is to promote action and to take next steps so that we continue to grow.
We'll go through some quick examples of how we do this. One of our very active projects is an environmental justice land revitalization project in
Detroit, Michigan. This was an in-kind project. Everybody involved has provided in-kind assistance.
They do not have formal brownfields funding or funding from ATSDR.
The community in Southwest Detroit focused on using the Action Model as a resource guide to highlight the many positive efforts that various
members of the community and the development community are taking to improve community health. Actions that came out have been several
health fairs to assist with childhood and other types of childhood lead screening and other types of health screening.
They've collaborated with Wayne State University.
They've been able to – EPA helped enhanced available maps of industries and businesses in 48217, so has the City of Detroit.
And they've mapped six surrounding of area codes. Bilingual fact sheets tailored to a
particular ZIP code on the Rouge River about fish consumption have been developed.
The Action Model was incorporated into an environmental justice initiative. There was a very large conference hosted by Wayne State
University called, Know Your Rights, and basically, that was a lead exposure outreach and education conference to explain why enforcement
is being taken against landlords in Detroit if they are not having lead health risk assessments done
on their properties when they are renting to families with small children.
So very interesting projects, and we have a very large multi-agency collaboration that's working
together with the community which has been very successful.
Leann Bing: This next slide is from our Leading Change booklet highlighting the success story in Clearwater, Florida.
The image on the top on this next left hand side is a gas station which was used for drug deals and other crimes. South Clearwater's Citizens for
Progressive Action took control of the property for the neighborhood using neighborhood grants from HUD residents, government agencies and
private sector worked together to transform this into South Springwood neighborhood police station.
This is another example from Clearwater, Florida. This Clearwater neighborhood housing services acquired this complex and renovated for low-
income tenants. This $14 million project was financed through bonds, loans, tax credit equity, development fees and grants including the
brownfield grant. Over the 14 months the exterior were completely remodeled.
The Bank of America funded a “make a difference” center at the apartments with a computer lab, a library, a playground and laundry
facilities. This is another example of some of the success stories that are now in the Leading Change book.
Laurel Berman: Now, we've talked about the Baraboo, Wisconsin Action Model project as one of our case examples in the companion video that
we have about the project. I want to show some of the changes that rapidly occurred in Baraboo and to stress the importance of doing what's
important to the community. What was important to this community was environmental conservation, especially of the Baraboo River.
During the project in June 2008, there was a record flood. Many people lost their homes. This recreational trail that you see on the upper left
was very damaged. It was still under development at that time and went through a lot of damage during the storm.
Below, you see two years later, the city immediately begin to repair the trail. It was within weeks of the aftermath of the storm.
And in respond to community concerns that came out in the Action Model where people said
we need a place to walk our dogs, we need dog waste receptacles which you see here on the left.
They added more places to sit and, by doing surveillance of the trail, could actually show that more people of various ages were using the trail.
More people were using the parks that were connected to the trail and they were very
successful and also building a dog park adjacent to the trail.
You see some of the additional changes that occurred very rapidly. We discussed the waste transfer facility before, but this is sort of the quick
snapshot from a standing building in the matter of one week to only left were dumpsters and then it was an open lot which is now an alfalfa field.
While they're waiting for a green developer – they have an ordinance for green development in the new redevelopment. While waiting for the perfect
developer to come in, the city planted alfalfa on the site which is used to feed local livestock. So they have a sustainable interim use.
Below is the continued remediation of the manufactured gas plant. Alliant Energy is now off the site. Eventually, part of that area will be a
mixture of housing, which you're looking at. In the middle is a transformer storage yard which was completely remediated and removed.
There were no PCB issues associated with the site, which was one of the concerns, and you see the ongoing remediation on the lower right.
How we continue to promote action and our next steps is we've recently developed a steering committee – a specific group of national experts
from different areas such as urban planning, food policy, food systems, different academics, along with the people on this call, Technical Assistance
to Brownfields, public health officials, local health agencies, EPA, community outreach professionals and professionals in economic
development, among others, to help us shape our work over the next several years and help us grow bigger so that we can share not only the
expertise of our national experts, but also reach out to more communities.
We wanted to highlight some actions you can take. Please visit our webpage, download our free resources.
There is a contact email for our land reuse team, Laurel, Leann and Gary and feel free to contact us.
You can also contact any of our regional ATSDR reps; they have all their contact information on the website.
And, you can engage your state and your local health department in this process.
We encourage you to adopt the Action Model for your projects. We'll help you with this. As a matter of fact, we support our resources.
We have one final very quick polling question we want to ask and then we do want to leave, you know, some time for question and answer.
We have had some questions coming in over the chat features. So, really quickly as you've been thinking about the webinar and thinking about the
information you've heard, I want to get a sense of what actions people may plan to take now that they're participating in this webinar.
So, if you could just take a few minutes and quickly respond again, you can select more than one choice.
And let's go ahead and we're going to close it. So this is phenomenal. It sounds like about everybody, and that's 86% which is a pretty big
number, are going to download and use the materials that were discussed today and are available on the website. A third of folks are going
to contact their regional representative. Just less than a third are going to their state or local health departments to engage them and again just about
a less than a third are going to adopt the action model for your projects and around 14% are
going to do other things. So that's really great to hear.
As we have been talking, lots of questions have come in over the question-and-answer pane and so we will take a few minutes to try and answer at
least a few of those questions. And again if you do have a question you'd like to ask, if you could
just use that question pane, your question and it will pop up here on our screen.
And so a couple of questions have come in. Laurel and Leann, I'll let you decide who wants to answer these.
So one question is: do measures of community health include things such as connectivity, access and transportation, as well as things like
toxicity, contamination et cetera? And the genesis of this question is that the obesity and diabetes epidemic makes the built environment
consideration as equally important as things chemical toxicity.
So, are those other factors included in some of the measures of community health?
Laurel Berman: Yes, yes, yes, and yes absolutely. This is what communities come up with. They want their walk score for example.
They want to know how connected their sidewalks are to all over their cities. Can they walk everywhere? How many parks are there?
What is the percentage of green space? How many people use the parks?
These are definitely considered public health measures along with more traditional health
measures such as contamination and toxicity and pollution.
Matt Hiester: Leann, anything you want to add?
Leann Bing: No, I totally agree with Laurel, yes. What is included in each community is unique and they choose their own health indicators.
Matt Hiester: OK. Someone is asking who is the intended user for the site tool?
Laurel Berman: Any of us could answer that. We created this for local health agencies to help them engage more with land use/reuse because
they're usually the first stop. People say, "What's the Phase 1 on this?" And it's usually maintained by the local health agency.
But we encourage grantees especially to use it to develop their site inventory.
It's free. They can save a lot of money. They can go into site assessment because it's very easy to use and we support it.
Now (Gary Pearlman) gives webinars on the tool and it also comes with its own tutorial. So anybody that really wants to get a handle on the
overall world of what sites are in my community can use the site tool.
Matt Hiester: Great, thank you. And a quick question, I think this is probably the easy to
answer. Folks are wondering are these tools available to the public for download?
Leann Bing: The tools are available. They're not available for downloads because we’re not allowed to put them on our website, but all you
have to do is send an email to the and I will be happy to send you a copy of the tools.
Laurel Berman: The videos, the Leading Change book, the action model and examples are
completely free and downloadable. It's just the site tool has a platform that we need to mail out.
Matt Hiester: OK. A couple of questions have come in surrounding the grant funding. So one is, can funds be allocated for community health
projects if it's not specified in an existing grant? And if so how does that work? Leann Bing: Laurel this is probably a good question for you. The EPA grants.
Laurel Berman: Can you repeat that, I'm sorry. Can all be allocated?
Matt Hiester: Can it be allocated for health projects if it's not specified in an existing grant?
Laurel Berman: Yes. Actually we try to maintain very good relationships with the brownfields coordinators at EPA. So let's say somebody has
an existing brownfields grant and a problem comes up or an issue comes up. We've actually had EPA project officers, project managers on
brownfields grant say, "Why don't we readjust your budget and look at health monitoring?"
A direct example was a town that was an unincorporated village, I guess should be the right township that was concerned about their drinking
water. People actually were not using their drinking water because they thought it was contaminated. And they ended up getting some
other pockets of funding from the state, but the EPA project manager had ATSDR consult on the situation. And they did end up testing the tap,
which was where they're getting their ground water with their potable water. And it turns out
there was not an issue. There was not a contamination issue.
So you could avoid a lot of problems that way. So it was very worthwhile. So yes, you can go back in. We have seen that happen with the EPA
brownfields program. And I should not speak for EPA, but yes, that can be done at that perspective.
Matt Hiester: Great thank you. And another question kind of related to funding: at what point in the brownfields process would you encourage a
local health department to apply for an ATSDR brownfields land reuse and redevelopment grant?
At what point of the process would you -- would you encourage the health department to apply for that grant funding?
Leann Bing: They can apply for it at any point of the process whether at the beginning, the middle or the end.
Laurel Berman: Right. There could be an established community group that's working on different issues for example.
The project could be well underway, but you need some -- it would be great if they have a little funding, there's an example or could be just at the
beginning stages where they're thinking about building capacity in the community and working
with the community on, let's say, a land fill that's being redeveloped.
Matt Hiester: OK, great. And someone is asking and this maybe -- I don't know if you know the answer but how many of the ATSDR brownfield
grants are going to be available for 2013, any sense?
Leann Bing: Normally we have between two and four. It just depends on the budget year.
Matt Hiester: Understandable. And then another question and this -- actually two more questions and I think we'll probably need to stop. One,
someone is asking if on the steering committee, Laurel that you discussed, is there tribal representation on the steering committee?
Laurel Berman: Yes, there is and we welcome additional tribal representation.
Matt Hiester: Great. And then I think for our last question. This is a question that's a little more specific to Baraboo, but I think it might be
interesting more generally. Someone asked: can you talk about how they leverage funding for activities like demolishing the Veolia site or
installing the bioswale? Who coordinated and oversaw the work on such activities? Was it the local health department?
Laurel Berman: The local health department was not part of the demolition. Their project was to -- they did a visual site assessment of the
properties in the redevelopment area and assessed them in terms of lead risk or asbestos, which was a tremendous project.
In Baraboo they have brownfield funding for assessment. They probably had -- I don't know where their demolition funding came from.
It might have been a clean-up grant, but the bio swale -- , the bio filtration pond -- was a volunteer effort and that is something I really, really want to
emphasize is there's a lot you can do with a little bit of community will.
Sometimes some of the major, I don't want to name a store, but you can get seedlings for example for a project like this if you just ask.
They just -- there are photographs we have of the community just getting out there and creating that bio filtration pond.
Matt Hiester: Great, thanks. And then the last question that came in and I think it kind of feeds into the next and final slide. Someone is asking if
people are interested in joining the steering committee or just being, kind of a looped in on
what's going on, how might they do that? And I'm assuming it's going to be to contact one of you?
Laurel Berman: Yes. Contact me and our steering committee is large, but we welcome as many people as we can fit or we can do separate
updates or have sort of a sub, I don't mind having a subcommittee. I think it would be great so that we can get this information out to people.
The first step will be to upgrade our web page to include the description of the steering committee and what we're working on.
Matt Hiester: And one final thought before we do wrap up. A couple of folks have asked: is this webinar content going to be available after the
webinar? And the answer to that is yes, we will make available the slides and some of the materials that we talk about today through ATSDR
brownfields and land reuse initiative website. That will take you a little time to get the information up there, but it will definitely be made available if
folks want to view it or if you know people that weren't available to participate today and you think would benefit from listening to this.
And hopefully that is the step that folks will take is to pass this information. One it will be available through the ATSDR website.
So at this point I would like thank our speakers, Laurel Berman and Leann Bing. They've done a phenomenal job today of giving us a great
overview of the program, the initiative, and many of the resources are available. We appreciate everyone participating in today's webinar.
If folks do want to stay on for a few minutes, we will leave the presentation pane open. So if you do have additional questions that you want to
send us, we can certainly follow up with you and answers to those or if you have any feedback on the webinar, you can certainly put it into the pane.
Thank you.