ATSDR’s Partnership to Promote Local Efforts to Reduce Environmental Exposure (APPLETREE)

Batch of old rusty barrels against the blue sky.

APPLETREE grows its investments in programs that encourage careful, informed site selection for early care and education (ECE) sites.

In 2020, APPLETREE’s cooperative agreement program worked with state health departments to address environmental issues in communities nationwide, encourage thoughtful selection of sites for ECE facilities, and provide support for COVID-19 response activities.

What is ATSDR’s Choose Safe Places for Early Care and Education (CSPECE) Program?

The CSPECE program offers towns, cities, and states a framework to adopt practices to ensure early care and education (ECE) centers are located away from potential environmental chemical hazards.

For example, in October 2020, Wisconsin’s Choose Safe Places program identified a site with a leaking underground storage tank near a proposed childcare facility. APPLETREE staff conducted a thorough search for available information and resources to investigate the potential risk for petroleum volatile organic compound contamination affecting the proposed property. As a result of APPLETREE’s efforts, the state added this location to its list of priority sites for vapor intrusion investigation.

After a gasoline spill in Canyonville (Douglas County), Oregon, that affected several nearby residential and commercial properties, APPLETREE staff assisted the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality. Staff provided information about the health effects of gasoline and helped explain environmental data to a local business whose building had been affected by contamination from the spill.

APPLETREE staff also provided significant support to the COVID-19 response. Click here to learn more about their unique contributions.

Page last reviewed: December 29, 2021