The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awarded Northampton Community College (NCC) with a $225,113 Pollution Prevention grant funded by the President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The College’s Emerging Technology Applications Center (ETAC) program will deliver on-site technical assistance and educational training in Pollution Prevention (P2) approaches that will aid businesses in reducing their environmental footprint, operating expenses, and liability risk.  

Dr. John Barkanic, managing director of the grant, comments, “The EPA funding is critical to reducing industrial pollution using preventative measures. The program proposed by NCC is designed to support manufacturers across eastern Pennsylvania, with special emphasis on under-served communities located in Environmental Justice Zones.” 

At its core, NCC’s project entitled, P2 Technical Assistance for Pennsylvania Aerospace, Food, Beverage, and Metal Manufacturers, will identify more economical methods to reduce or eliminate the release of toxic air emissions and reduce waste created from solvent-based coatings and green-house gas emissions. The project will decrease human exposure to pollutants that contribute to the severity of respiratory diseases.  

According to EPA.gov, the United States produces billions of pounds of pollution each year and spends billions of dollars per year controlling this pollution. Preventing pollution versus managing waste after it is produced will protect and advance community health and be more economical, sustainable, and environmentally sound. 

NCC currently has a similar grant, the EPA Source Reduction Assistant grant, the purpose of which aligns with the P2 grant. The College received this award in the heart of the pandemic, September 2020. The project period will soon be ending, and this new P2 grant will allow NCC to continue to do work in this area for the next three years until 2025.  

Find more information on ETAC at NCC.