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Environmental Justice Small Grants Program & EPA Ports Initiative

Utah Clean Cities Near-Port Communities Project

Utah Clean Cities was selected as an awardee of the EPA’s Environmental Justice Small Grants (EJSG) Program to support a project that addresses port-related impacts and issues.

Project Overview

Supporting Near-Port Communities in Addressing Harmful Air Quality Impacts

With the development of the Utah Inland Port, major impacts on near-port and surrounding communities have been identified including:

  • Environmental: Air and water pollution, habitat destruction, impairment (and possible permanent loss), noise from construction and transportation and increased traffic impacts
  • Social: health, community and economic impacts

While these impacts will be felt throughout the entire Wasatch Front, these impacts will significantly impact the west side residents and densely populated communities that are within the surrounding areas of the port.

What Defines Near-Port Communities?

Near-Port Communities include communities that are within a 5-7 mile radius of the proposed Inland Port.

For this project specifically,

Zip Codes: 84044, 84116, 84104

Project Objectives

What Does This Project Seek to Accomplish?

Through this funding, and with the resources provided through the EPA’s Community Action Roadmap, Utah Clean Cities seeks to support our local near-port communities through direct engagement, with the goal of supporting the centering of community voices and supporting the community through the tools and resources accessible by the Clean Cities program to address increased impacts due to the Utah Inland Port.

How Will Goals Be Achieved?

The goals of this project will be achieved by:

  • Conducting a collective community needs assessment through surveys, public events, listening sessions, etc..
  • Developing public education materials and resources in the form of a website, brochures, posters, reports, etc..
  • Hosting listening sessions with community members and leaders
  • Building a community-supported steering committee to monitor UCCs project development
  • Utilizing the EPA’s Community Action Roadmap and Port Collaborative Toolkit 

Community Engagement and Leadership

By centering community voices, we seek to bring knowledge gained through this assessment to the Utah Inland Port Authority (UIPA) to identify and address inequities currently experienced by near-port communities and support in providing resources toward building trust, connection, and solution-driven collaboration between the UIPA and these communities.

Want To Participate?

Utah Clean Cities wants to gather leaders who represent the community who can serve as a Steering Committee through this project.

We are seeking additional partners interested in participating in our community committee. This group will oversee the work completed by UCC and provide guidance and insight on community impacts. They will support in conducting the official needs assessment and review all materials developed for the communities. Members will support as a direct link to these communities and ensure the project and UCC are keeping these community needs centered.

Community Committee Members must be from or work directly within Westside/Near-Port Communities. This is a stipend opportunity! Contact for more information.

Community Engagement In Action: Case Study

Developing a Community Action Roadmap to Engage in Port of Wilmington Expansion

“The case study outlined below is an example of how one community group is working to empower and organize local residents to secure local environmental protections as part of a planned expansion project at the Port of Wilmington, Delaware. This case study was developed to share lessons learned that may inform other near-port communities with similar efforts.”

Source: EPA- Developing a Community Action Roadmap

Environmental Justice Small Grant Program & Ports Initiative

What is the EPA’s EJSG?

Since its inception in 1994, the Environmental Justice Small Grants (EJSG) Program has awarded more than $37 million in funding to communities facing environmental justice issues. All projects are associated with at least one qualified environmental statute.

The program is designed to support and empower communities and assist in communities understanding and addressing exposure to multiple environmental harms and risks.

General Project Goals

Support community-driven projects designed to engage, educate, and empower communities to better understand local environmental and public health issues and develop strategies for addressing those issues, building consensus in the community, and setting community priorities.

Source: EPA-Environmental Justice Small Grants Program

2021 EJSG Ports Initiative Projects

EPA awarded grants for the following 2021 Ports Initiative Partnership EJSG projects that will prepare community stakeholders to effectively engage with operators and other stakeholders of nearby port or rail facilities. This preparation is intended to help communities influence decision-making on operations and projects that may impact diesel engine emissions and related air quality.

Source: EPA-2021 Environmental Justice Small Grants

UCC project awarded for 2021 – 2022
1 of 7 ports focused projects selected

EPA & Environmental Justice

Want To Know More About Environmental Justice?

Find out more about the EPA’s definition of environmental justice and how it relates to ongoing projects, as well as learn more about available environmental justice resources.

Materials & Project Resources

Resources for more information

Project Informational Printout

Brief PDF visual overview of project, with main details and contact information.

Ports Primer for Communities

An Overview of Ports Planning and Operations to Support Community Participation: Intended to help community members participate effectively in the decision-making process by increasing local understanding of, the role of ports, how ports can impact local land use, economic trends, air quality, and other aspects of the environment and quality of life,and tools and resources that have been helpful in other communities. Source: EPA- Ports Primer for Communities

Community Action Roadmap: Empowering Near-Port Communities

“Provides a step-by-step guide to help near-port communities effectively engage in port decisions that may impact local land use, environmental health, and quality of life.” Source: EPA- Community Action Roadmap

Ports Initiative

Through this ports partnership initiative, EPA supports efforts to improve efficiency, enhance energy security, save costs, and reduce harmful health impacts by advancing next-generation, clean technologies, and practices at ports. Source: EPA Ports Initiative

Community-Port Collaboration Toolkit

A resource from the EPA to “designed to help communities and ports develop collaboration skills and to enhance understanding of stakeholders’ priorities and challenges associated with port-related activities.” Source: EPA- Community-Port Collaboration Toolkit

Environmental Justice Primer for Ports

“Intended to help port decision-makers better understand the needs of near-port communities, how they can help address these needs, and build productive community relationships during planning activities and operations.” Source: EPA- Environmental Justice Primer for Ports

Have a Question?

Reach Out >

The Utah Clean Cities Board of Directors and staff welcomes inquiries from interested community members, businesses and organizations. You’ll find our team helpful and inclusive. We look forward to helping you get started with a Utah Clean Cities membership, and involved in one (or more) of our many programs or grants today!