EPA’s fiscal year 2010 funding blueprint proposes a $10.5 billion budget for the agency, according to a press release issued by EPA.

takes significant strides to ensure that our air, land, and water are safe and clean. Expanding on the investments of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, this allows EPA to provide real solutions to our economic crisis. It significantly improves accountability and transparency, ensuring fiscal responsibility at a time when every dollar counts.

“EPA’s new budget reflects the President’s commitment to growing a clean energy economy while protecting human health and the environment,” said Administrator Lisa P. Jackson.

Budget highlights:

Maintaining and Improving Clean Water Infrastructure: To maintain and improve outdated water infrastructure and keep wastewater and drinking water clean and safe, EPA has budgeted $3.9 billion. The funding will support efforts around the country to build and renovate an estimated 1,000 clean water and 700 drinking water infrastructure projects, support green infrastructure and create thousands of technical and construction jobs, according to the agency. Funding will also be available to help communities repair and upgrade the aging network of drinking water and wastewater pipes that are overwhelmed and breaking down.

The budget includes a $475 million multi-agency Great Lakes Initiative to protect and clean up the largest fresh water lakes in the world through restoration efforts, invasive species control, non-point source pollution mitigation and critical habitats protection. The budget also includes funding for crucial efforts to protect, maintain, and restore the Chesapeake Bay and Anacostia River, Puget Sound, San Francisco Bay, Lake Champlain and other large waterbodies.

Addressing Climate Change: To address what EPA calls “the growing threat of climate change,” the agency will make investments in the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions inventory. This involves new analytical tools, upgraded testing capabilities, and coordination with other agencies on research and green initiatives.

EPA’s $17 million GHG registry investment will include data reporting and implementation efforts, data management systems, guidance and materials for the regulated community and source measurement technologies. The budget also includes an additional $2 million for EPA to continue to reduce its own GHG emissions by 3 percent each year.

Managing Resources Efficiently: EPA will increase funding for the Inspector General’s office to monitor public dollars entrusted to the agency.

Restoring Communities: The EPA budget is investing in hazardous waste cleanups such as Superfund and Brownfields programs that employ thousands of people across the country and restore properties for economic use.

$1.3 billion will go to increase the number of hazardous waste sites ready for anticipated use and fund ongoing site cleanups. The budget proposes to restore the Superfund tax known as the “polluter pays” policy, which expired in 1995, to fund future clean-up efforts. Beginning in 2011, the Superfund tax is estimated to generate $1 billion of revenue a year, rising to $2 billion a year by 2019.

The budget proposes $175 million for the Brownfields program, which will provide additional assessment, clean-up, and job-training grants. The budget also contains $128 million for the Leaking Underground Storage Tank and Underground Storage Tank programs and $18 million for the Oil Spill Response program.

Managing Chemical Risks: A total of $55 million will go to an enhanced toxics program to screen, assess and reduce chemical risks. Funding will be invested in monitoring air toxics at schools and to provide technical assistance and coordination with states and local communities. Other major investments include funding for continued efforts to reduce lead exposure and grants to states, tribes, and other partners to promote worker safety, protection of water sources and endangered species from pesticide exposure.

Reinforcing Scientific Integrity: The budget proposal supports what the agency describes as “rigorous, peer-reviewed scientific analyses” with $842 million for science and technology. The budget also proposes additional funding for water sustainability to assess, develop and compile scientifically rigorous tools and models that will help advance the deployment of green water infrastructure.

Protecting Communities: Approximately $600 million will go to the EPA’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance program. It includes an increase of nearly 30 additional enforcement staff and will enhance efforts to integrate environmental justice considerations in EPA programs and policies. It will also aid in the work to fulfill environmental requirements with respect to other federal agencies’ recovery act projects.

Strengthening Partnerships: Administrator Jackson emphasized that states, localities and tribes are the front line in many environmental programs, as they implement major portions of almost all EPA programs. The budget includes $1.1 billion for categorical grants to states and tribes.

More information on the FY 2010 budget:www.epa.gov/budget/