Greenpoint Bioremediation Project 2020-10-01T10:30:41+00:00

Project Description

Greenpoint Bioremediation Project

Project Lead: Newtown Creek Alliance
Project Partners: Brooklyn College – Environmental Sciences Analytical Center, Brooklyn College – Microbiology Lab; New York City Urban Soils Institute; New York City Soil & Water Conservation District; Java Street Community Garden; 61 Franklin Street Garden; and North Brooklyn Community Boathouse (formerly North Brooklyn Boat Club)
Project Location: Java Street Community Garden, 61 Franklin Street Garden, North Brooklyn Community Boathouse, Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, and Brooklyn Public Library – Greenpoint Branch
GCEF Grant: $81,928
Matching Contribution: $85,700
Project Completed: May 2017

In 2015, through a competitive process, the Newtown Creek Alliance received $81,928 in GCEF funding (and provided $85,700 in matching funds) to increase public knowledge about urban soil health, and the use of biological methods to reduce pollutant contamination in residential soils (e.g, mycoremediation and compost “tea”). Major project activities included: delivering 3 full-day, hands-on workshops on urban soils and bioremediation of pollutants for residents at Greenpoint community gardens and the North Brooklyn Community Boathouse.  In addition, the project produced a citizen guide poster to support the workshops and for general community education purposes, created a bookshelf of literature about soil ecology at the New York Public Library – Greenpoint Branch, installed a compost tea brewer at Java Street Community Garden, and developed a website to share all project materials – including a video of workshops, bioremediation resources, and instructional materials – with the wider Greenpoint community in order to empower residents to directly improve the health of the soils in their homes and neighborhoods.

The Greenpoint Bioremediation website can be found at:

The Greenpoint Bioremediation project continues to distribute its “Introduction to Urban Soil Bioremediation” citizen guide poster at all Newtown Creek Alliance events, and to a number of community partners including the Greenpoint schools and North Brooklyn Neighbors (formerly, Neighbors Allied for Good Growth).

Photos: 1, 3-5 above by Mitch Waxman.

  • Engaged over 150 community members through a series of workshops and public events on urban soils, beneficial microbes & compost tea, and mycoremediation
  • Installed a 55-gallon compost tea brewer at Java Street Community Garden and held four demonstration and distribution events
  • Brewed and distributed a total of 165 gallons of compost tea by the end of the project (and continues to be brewed to date)
  • Created “An Introduction to Urban Soil Bioremediation” citizen guide poster, available on the website and distributed in hardcopy in the community
  • Created a community collection of books relating to soils and bioremediation techniques which is housed at Greenpoint branch of the Brooklyn Public Library and available to the general public

Urban Soils Institute Workshop (May 22, 2016):

Greenpoint Bioremediation 2016 Workshop Excerpts:

Elaine Ingham Workshop (July 9th, 2016):

Tradd Cotter Workshop, Part 2 (July 31st, 2016): (Watch Part 1 here)

Daniel Reyes Workshop (July 31st, 2016):