April 22, 2024

Duckworth Touts $2.3 Million in Federal Funding She Secured for Green Era Campus

The Duckworth-secured investment will support transformation of brownfields site in Auburn Gresham


[CHICAGO, IL] – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today visited Green Era Campus in Chicago’s Auburn Gresham neighborhood to highlight and discuss the $2,367,000 she secured through a Fiscal Year 2024 Congressionally Directed Spending Request for the South Side nonprofit. The funding Duckworth requested and successfully secured will help Green Era transform 9 acres of brownfields in the Auburn Gresham neighborhood into a center for organics recycling, green energy and jobs as well as fresh produce and small business incubation. Photos from today’s visit are available on the Senator’s website.

“Our state and our nation are stronger when we invest in our communities and families—and that’s one of the things Congressionally Directed Spending allows us to do,” said Duckworth. “I’m proud I was able to help secure critical support for projects all across our state, including for Green Era’s ambitious and inspiring plans to transform this formerly contaminated site. Environmental justice is not only about making sure families don’t have to drink brown water, breathe contaminated air or worry about pollution’s impact on their family’s health, it’s also about creating a green future for the next generation. It was great to tour this site today, and I look forward to watching this federal investment I secured help Green Era accomplish its goals and improve lives right here in our city.”

“The Green Era Campus and Urban Growers Collective are grateful and honored to host Senator Duckworth and her team to learn more about community-based green energy and food system projects, and ways that community intelligence and resources can create circular economies that support the health and economic development of all of our neighborhoods,” said Green Era President and Co-Founder Erika Allen.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a brownfield is a property, the expansion, redevelopment or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant or contaminant. It is estimated that there are more than 450,000 brownfields in the U.S. Cleaning up and reinvesting in these properties increases local tax bases, facilitates job growth, utilizes existing infrastructure, takes development pressures off of undeveloped, open land and both improves and protects the environment.

In Fiscal Year 2024, Duckworth and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) successfully secured more than $264 million through CDS for Illinois, $182 million in FY23 and another $211 million for Illinois in FY22. A map detailing where funding has gone throughout Illinois can be found on the Senator’s website. Senator Duckworth works with an Independent Review Board to examine and evaluate worthwhile projects focused on building infrastructure, stimulating economic development and providing essential services for Illinois communities.