Brownfields Program Coordinator: CaSandera Johnson
What the Heck Is a Brownfield?
A Brownfield is piece of land that a community, organization, or agency wants to redevelop or reuse but cannot because the land is either contaminated or perceived to be contaminated by a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. Some examples of a brownfield site could be abandoned illegal dumpsites, abandoned tank farms, old canneries, buildings that contain contaminants like lead-based paint and asbestos materials, or abandoned gas stations. When these sites are identified, the site has to have a reuse or redevelopment plan which could be using an existing building as a community meeting hall, recreational center, or using the property for a community garden, developing affordable housing, or returning the site back to its traditional subsistence use.
Often, it is the perceived contaminants on a property that hinder redevelopment of the property. Through the brownfield process we can clear stigma and the property can be returned to productive use.
Below is the basic process to get these brownfield sites back to reuse.
- Identify Brownfields & tie to Redevelopment Goals
- Investigate (conduct site assessments)
- Cleanup (if necessary)
Example of brownfield sites in the Bristol Bay area (click photo for more information):
Submitting a Site to BBNA Inventory
If anyone is concerned about a potentially contaminated site and wants it on BBNA’s Brownfield Inventory, please download the site questionnaire survey link and fill out the information the best that you can. The more detailed information the better we can determine eligibility for brownfield services.
Does Your Village Have Contaminated Sites with Redevelopment Potential?
There are two services that can assist in conducting site assessments:
EPA’s Targeted Brownfield Assessment (TBA), which is a service providing an environmental assessment that fits the requestor’s needs. This service can be applied for any time of the year.
Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) provides a Brownfield Assessment and Cleanup (DBAC) service that assist with hiring a contractor for environmental assessments or cleanup for eligible brownfield sites. The deadline to apply for services is March 1st.
BBNA’s Brownfields Program services 20 of our Bristol Bay communities. The Public Record is a spreadsheet that contains information about contaminated sites and what kind of action has been done with these sites. Information found on the Public Record is from the DEC Contaminated Sites Database and more detailed information can be found on the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation Website.
Click map for Brownfields Interactive Map:
U.S. EPA Brownfield Homepage: http://www2.epa.gov/brownfields
U.S. EPA Land Revitalization Homepage: http://www2.epa.gov/land-revitalization
Alaska DEC Brownfields Homepage: http://dec.alaska.gov/spar/csp/brownfields.htm
Center for Creative Land Recycling Website: http://www.cclr.org/
If you have any questions about the BBNA Brownfields Program or if you have a concern about a contaminated site, please call CaSandera Johnson at (907)842-5257 ext. 348, or toll-free 1-800-478-5757 ext. 348.