SALT LAKE CITY — Two nonprofit organizations in Utah are among 46 groups across the country to receive environmental justice grants from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The Repertory Dance Theater and the Utah Society for Environmental Education each received $25,000 designed to help under-served communities.

EPA officials say the Utah Society for Environmental Education will create a waste/recycling program for residents of Rose Park community. The mission of the Keep Rose Park Beautiful Project is to help reduce improper waste management in Rose Park. The project will use information gathered from earlier studies to create a waste/recycling education program.

The Repertory Dance Theater will help educate Salt Lake City youths about the impacts of air pollution. The organization will conduct residency programs in K-6 schools in the west and central areas of Salt Lake City and will use the arts to help students understand the impacts of air pollution on the environment and their health. The project intends to produce lectures, demonstrations and movement classes in 10 elementary schools.

EPA also announced it is seeking applicants for $1 million in environmental justice small grants expected to be awarded in 2012. The grants help nonprofit organizations to conduct research, provide education, and develop solutions to local health and environmental issues in communities overburdened by pollution.

The 2012 grant solicitation is now open and will close on Feb. 29, 2012. Applicants must be incorporated nonprofits or tribal organizations working to educate and help communities understand and address local environmental and public health issues. More information on the Environmental Justice Small Grants program and a list of grantees is available at: www.epa.gov/compliance/environmentaljustice/grants/ej-smgrants.html

— Amy Joi O'Donoghue