Boonslick Regional Planning Commission receives major EPA grant

Boonslick Regional Planning Commission website

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced more than $1.6 million in funding from President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda to expand recycling infrastructure and waste management systems across Missouri.

The EPA has selected the Boonslick Regional Planning Commission in Missouri to receive grants totaling over $1 million under the newly created Solid Waste Infrastructure for Recycling funding opportunity. Additionally, the agency is making approximately $572,000 available for Missouri to improve solid waste management planning, data collection, and implementation of plans. Thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, this investment, which totals $105 million nationwide, is part of the EPA’s largest recycling investment in 30 years.

These grants support the implementation of the EPA’s National Recycling Strategy, aimed at building an economy devoted to keeping materials, products, and services in circulation for as long as possible—known as a “circular economy.”

“Reducing waste is one crucial step we can take to combat the climate crisis and ensure environmental justice in our Heartland communities,” said EPA Region 7 Administrator Meg McCollister. “Thanks to President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, this funding will help our region’s states reduce gases like methane by diverting waste from landfills. These funds will also ensure that our overburdened communities receive the resources needed for a cleaner and healthier environment for all.”

“We are excited that the Boonslick Regional Planning Commission (BRPC) has been awarded this project through the EPA’s Solid Waste Infrastructure for Recycling Grant Program,” said Boonslick Regional Planning Commission Chairman Ryan Poston. “This grant will enhance the capacities of the East Central Missouri Recycling Center. The outcomes of this opportunity will significantly impact our community and will provide residents of the Boonslick Region and surrounding areas with greater access to recycling drop-off locations, as well as increase the amount of materials that the Recycling Center handles.”

President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda aims to grow the American economy from the bottom up and the middle out. It focuses on rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure, driving over $470 billion in private-sector manufacturing and clean energy investments in the United States, and creating a manufacturing and innovation boom powered by good-paying jobs that don’t require a four-year degree. The agenda also aims to build a clean energy economy that will combat climate change and make our communities more resilient.

The EPA’s Solid Waste Infrastructure for Recycling Grant Program is also advancing the President’s Justice40 Initiative, which aims to ensure that 40% of the overall benefits of certain federal investments go to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized, underserved, and overburdened by pollution. Approximately $56 million out of the $73 million (or 76%) of the total funding for communities will be allocated to projects that benefit disadvantaged communities.

Solid Waste Infrastructure for Recycling Grants for Communities

The recycling grants for communities will support improvements to waste management systems across the country. The Boonslick Regional Planning Commission will use funds to expand the East Central Solid Waste Management District by purchasing a truck, a trailer, and a Styrofoam compactor, as well as constructing a new storage house with a concrete driveway. These actions will help the recycling center create 20 staffed drop-off locations throughout the four-county region of Warren, Lincoln, Montgomery, and Franklin counties in Missouri.

Solid Waste Infrastructure for Recycling Grants for States and Territories

The recycling grants for states and territories will provide funding to all 56 states, territories, and the District of Columbia through grants ranging from $360,000 to $750,000, with the highest grant amounts supporting those states and territories that need it the most.

Missouri will use the funds to update its Solid Waste Management Plan with input from interested parties across the state, including 25 members of Missouri’s Solid Waste Advisory Board. The plan will include:

  • An addendum identifying priority items and implementation strategies.
  • A statewide market development plan, with strategies for maximizing collected funds and improving markets for scrap tires, as well as the recovery of emerging materials (e.g., solar panels and wind turbines).
  • Commissioning a sustainable, organic materials management plan, including strategies for usable food recovery to reduce food insecurity; recovery of organic materials for animal feed; and recovery of biochar for agricultural applications.

These grants represent important steps toward achieving the EPA’s National Recycling Goal and Food Loss and Waste Reduction Goal. Funded activities include improving post-consumer materials management programs through the development or updating of solid waste management plans and strengthening data collection efforts