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Watch: Environmental Agencies Struggling With Tens Of Millions In State Funding Cuts

An active aggregate mining operation near Mill Creek, Okla.
Logan Layden
/
StateImpact Oklahoma
An active aggregate mining operation near Mill Creek, Okla.

Oklahoma’s four primary environmental agencies have lost more than $15 million in state appropriations and tens of millions of dollars in legislatively directed reductions to revolving funds, OETA reports.

The cuts are forcing the Corporation Commission, Conservation Commission,Department of Environmental Quality and Water Resources Board to limit, delay or cancel programs or services designed to regulate pollution and remove environmental dangers, according to the Oklahoma News Report piece by Bob Sands and photojournalist Aaron Byrd.

Projects being impacted include plugging of long abandoned oil wells, removal of thousands of tires from illegal dumping grounds, clean-up projects to remove hazardous chemicals and grants that help low income home owners improve their septic tank systems.

StateImpact Oklahoma is a partnership among Oklahoma’s public radio stations and relies on contributions from readers and listeners to fulfill its mission of public service to Oklahoma and beyond. Donate online.

Joe was a founding reporter for StateImpact Oklahoma (2011-2019) covering the intersection of economic policy, energy and environment, and the residents of the state. He previously served as Managing Editor of Urban Tulsa Weekly, as the Arts & Entertainment Editor at Oklahoma Gazette and worked as a Staff Writer for The Oklahoman. Joe was a weekly arts and entertainment correspondent for KGOU from 2007-2010. He grew up in Bartlesville, Okla. and studied journalism at the University of Central Oklahoma.
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