BCONE was well represented at the National Brownfields Conference held in Oklahoma City, OK on August 15-19, 2022. I had the opportunity to speak on State Brownfield Associations & Collaborative Partnerships. My fellow presenters were the Past President of the Alabama Brownfields Association (ABA), Trey Noland, and Jason Lichtstein, Esq., the two-time past president of the Florida Brownfields Association (FBA). We discussed the benefits of having a robust brownfields association, the basic structures of each and the challenges of leading a non-profit, mostly volunteer program. BCONE's multi-state organization explained the added challenges and benefits of our regional approach. BCONE's regulatory committee allows for regulators to openly share the pros and cons of their State programs. BCONE's educational and scholarship committee also reaches across state boundaries where BCONE actively participates at a number of colleges, providing guest speakers for environmental-related courses; assisting with training programs; placing graduates into careers; and providing scholarships for inspiring students.
BCONE was also at the National Brownfields Conference supporting EPA's Region IV TAB (Technical Assistance for Brownfields) provider, ICMA. BCONE provides technical assistance to ICMA under its current USEPA TAB contract. BCONE representatives provided assistance with several of EPA's TAB Region IV open houses and meet the TAB coordinators. We were able to meet with, and listen to, representatives from many rural communities on their challenges with redeveloping and revitalizing their communities. Listening to the needs and then explaining what USEPA programs are available, ways they may be able to take full advantage of the programs, and ways the TAB program can assist their community needs was discussed at these sessions.
You’ll be hearing from me soon with a summary of BCONE’s Northeast Sustainable Communities Workshop (NSCW), held a month after the National Conference. You’ll notice similarities between the hot regional topics (emerging and forever contaminants, environmental justice, for example) covered at NSCW and the national topics that were covered in OK. BCONE continues to strive to be your best source of useful local, state, regional, and national brownfields information to assist your vision and projects.
In addition to being BCONE's President, Rick Shoyer is a Senior Project Consultant in the Soil and Groundwater Remediation Division at Montrose Environmental.
Posted September 19, 2022