The West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Program empowers communities, developers, and stakeholders to assess, cleanup, and sustainably reuse brownfields. WVDEP can provide free guidance and technical assistance throughout the brownfield redevelopment process.
Example services WVDEP provides include:
- Review and explain environmental reports.
- Provide technical and programmatical guidance to assess and remediate sites.
- Assist with educating stakeholders and conducting community outreach.
- Introduce similar projects successfully completed throughout the state and country.
- Identify potential project funding sources.
Brownfields Property Assessments
The Office of Environmental Remediation regularly applies for and frequently receives USEPA Brownfields Assessment Grants to conduct environmental assessments of brownfield sites throughout West Virginia. The amount of funding available for assessment varies over time and depends on the number of sites previously assessed. Occasionally funds are unavailable until the next grant funding cycle, which is typically October of each year.
The OER uses funds from these assessment grants to assist municipalities and non-profits to conduct Phase I and Phase II Environmental Site Assessments, Asbestos Inspections, and Lead-based Paint testing at properties that are potentially contaminated by hazardous materials or petroleum. The primary goal of these grant funds is to assess priority brownfields and return these properties to productive use for redevelopment. These services are provided at no cost, but sites are prioritized based on potential for redevelopment, community engagement/support, and need.
To obtain more information regarding the availability of funds for assessment of brownfield properties, contact the OER at DEPBrownfieldsAssessment@wv.gov.
Brownfields Revolving Fund
The Office of Environmental Remediation also administers the Brownfields Revolving Fund (BRF) program that offers low-interest loans to eligible local governments,
nonprofits, and private sector businesses to assist them in the cleanup of properties contaminated with petroleum or hazardous substances.
Repayment terms of up to 10 years can be negotiated.
Borrowers in the BRF program are required to contribute 20% of the total loan amount toward the cleanup effort, though the match amount can be met through
in-kind labor, material, or services. Borrowers also must enroll the site in the WV Voluntary Remediation Program to complete the cleanup work unless the
remediation is limited to asbestos or lead-based paint abatement. Funds cannot be used to perform environmental site assessments, such as Phase I or Phase II
ESAs prior to cleanup.
More information regarding cleanup loans from the Brownfield Revolving Fund can be found here or by emailing DEPBrownfieldsRevolvingFund@wv.gov.
Revitalizing the Chemical Valley
The Office of Environmental Remediation has been awarded a grant to pay for environmental property assessment at Brownfield sites in the Kanawha Valley.
The purpose of the grant is to help Kanawha Valley communities to encourage the redevelopment of Brownfield properties in their communities that may need a helping hand.
The center of the target funding area includes the towns of Nitro, St. Albans, Dunbar, South Charleston, Charleston,
and Belle, as well as the unincorporated communities of Institute, Malden, Rand, and Dupont City. However, funding is available for communities anywhere along the
Kanawha River from Gauley Bridge to Point Pleasant. During the 1960s when this part of WV was known as the Chemical Valley, it was home to more than 40 chemical
manufacturing companies. But since that time this industry has suffered a 74% employment reduction, and as of 2010 only 10,000 Kanawha Valley residents were employed
by a chemical company. These lost chemical industry jobs also resulted in an estimated 56,000 additional job losses from support businesses.
For more information about the grant, contact the OER at DEPBrownfieldsAssessment@wv.gov.
Brownfields Reference Documents for Download
EPA - Brownfields Federal Programs Guide (2019)
EPA’s Brownfields Program empowers states,
communities, and other stakeholders to work
together to assess, safely clean up, and sustainably
reuse brownfields. EPA provides essential funding
to communities through assessment, cleanup,
multipurpose, and revolving loan fund (RLF) grants.
EPA brownfields grants often provide a catalyst and
essential seed funding for environmental cleanup of
brownfields and community revitalization.
EPA - Brownfields Road Map to Understanding Options for Site Investigation and Cleanup (2017)
The Brownfields Road Map to Understanding Options for Site Investigation and Cleanup,
Sixth Edition, provides a general outline of the steps in the investigation and cleanup of
Brownfields sites and introduces Brownfields stakeholders to the range of technologies
and resources available to them.
EPA - The Revitalization Handbook (2019)
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Office of Site Remediation Enforcement (OSRE) manages the
enforcement of the nation’s contaminated sites cleanup laws, including the Comprehensive Environmental Response,
Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA, commonly known as Superfund), the corrective action and underground
storage tank cleanup provisions of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), and the Oil Pollution Act (OPA).
The main objective of the cleanup enforcement program is to ensure prompt site cleanup and the participation of
potentially responsible parties (PRPs) and others in performing and paying for cleanups in a manner that ensures
protection of human health and the environment.
CDFA - Brownfields Financing Toolkit
The CDFA Brownfields Financing Toolkit provides communities with an easy-to-use, best practices
resource on brownfields redevelopment. The toolkit approach to development finance brings together
the best of these financing concepts and techniques to provide a comprehensive response to capital and
resource needs. This guide is intended to provide information to communities interested in identifying
potential financing tools for the remediation and redevelopment of contaminated brownfield sites. The
following development finance tools are covered in this guide.
WVDEP - A User's Guide to Phase I Environmental Site Assessments
In the years after CERCLA passed, developers and lenders became increasingly risk averse to investment
in formerly used properties, citing a fear of becoming a PRP. In response to this trend and as an effort to
overcome the challenges of redeveloping potentially contaminated properties, Congress amended CERCLA to clarify
liability defenses and require AAI for liability protections. The U.S. EPA established standards for AAI in 2006.
WVDEP - Brownfield Redevelopment Process Overview
WVDEP - Brownfields Grant Letter from State Environmental Authority Request Form
The U.S. EPA Brownfields Program provides direct funding for brownfield assessments, brownfield cleanups, brownfield revolving loan funds, and environmental job training through competitive grants. A letter acknowledging assessment or remediation activities from the state environmental authority is required to be attached to all proposals for Brownfields Assessment Grants, Brownfields Cleanup Grants, Brownfields Multipurpose Grants, and Brownfields Revolving Loan Fund Grants. In addition, a support letter from the state environmental authority is recommended to be attached to all proposals for Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training Grants.
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection fully supports entities applying for these grants to enhance their local community and the state’s environment and economy.
In order to accommodate all applicants in a timely manner, WVDEP has created a request form that outlines basic information needed in order to provide a letter. Applicants should complete the form to the best of their ability and ensure that information provided is thorough and accurate.