Brownfields is a property that is, or has the potential to be, contaminated. Our Brownfields program is currently working on three projects within the Akwesasne community; abandoned homes, community-wide petroleum assessments and the Frogtown dump.
Abandoned homes could become a place for garbage dumping, drug houses, habitats for wild animals, graffiti, trespassing issues, arson, theft of items and are a magnet for young kids to explore and possibly be injured.
The first step to removing an abandoned home is to get permission from the property owner to do a Phase 1 records assessment including proof of ownership. We then conduct environmental testing (Phase 2) to find out what materials we will be dealing with. Many older homes were built with materials containing asbestos which requires special care in removing and hauling. If it is determined that the abandoned home should and can be removed, Brownfields may be able to fund the removal.
The community-wide petroleum assessments project conducts records research (Phase 1) and environmental assessments (Phase 2) on petroleum businesses that are no longer in operation. Two properties have had a phase 1 assessment completed and one has had phase 2 completed; all with no cost to the property owners.
The Frogtown dump is very old community dump which is currently closed. It is located between the Mohawk International Raceway and a community member’s property. It has had both phases completed. In order to prevent trespassing and further dumping, a fence was installed between the dump and a neighboring property paid for with Brownfields grant funds.
Akwesasne Brownfields Committee (ABC) is a volunteer group made up of community members and various employees of the Tribe. This group usually meets once a month, but due to the pandemic these meetings have been put on hold until further notice. They meet to review applications and reports to determine the highest priority projects.