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New York announces $300 million climate resilience funding

New York announces $300 million climate resilience funding

By Blake Jackson

Governor Kathy Hochul announced nearly $300 million in new grant opportunities to bolster New York's climate resilience efforts. This funding aims to protect communities, particularly vulnerable ones, from the harsh effects of climate change, such as flooding, extreme heat, and storms.

"Climate change demands a global response," Governor Hochul emphasized. "New York is leading the way with these climate initiatives, building upon our ongoing investments in protecting communities."

This announcement coincides with Governor Hochul's participation in a climate summit at the Vatican. Her recent appointment as a U.S. Climate Alliance Chair further underscores New York's commitment to bold climate action.

New York has already taken significant steps towards climate resilience. Since 2017, water quality infrastructure has received $5.5 billion in funding. Additionally, the Clean Water, Clean Air and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act and record Environmental Protection Fund contributions demonstrate the state's dedication to this critical issue.

New Grant Programs:

The Governor announced nearly $300 million in funding available through various programs:

  • Water Quality Improvement Project Program (WQIP): This DEC program offers at least $215 million in grants to support projects that directly improve water quality, reduce flood risks, or enhance climate resilience. Applications are due by July 31, 2024.
  • Climate Smart Communities: This DEC program provides $22.5 million to municipalities undertaking climate action initiatives. Projects like reducing food waste emissions, infrastructure upgrades, and climate planning are eligible. The application deadline is also July 31, 2024.

Funding for these programs comes from the Environmental Protection Fund and the Environmental Bond Act. Traditionally, municipalities contribute at least 50% of project costs. However, the 2025 budget offers financial assistance for disadvantaged communities and those facing hardship.

Project Categories:

The $21.5 million in WQIP grants can be used for various projects, including:

  • Reducing vehicle traffic
  • Minimizing food waste
  • Lowering hydrofluorocarbon emissions from cooling systems
  • Enhancing natural resilience through restoration efforts
  • Mitigating future flood risks
  • Preparing for extreme weather events

Additionally, up to $1 million supports planning and assessment projects related to climate mitigation, transportation, and land use.

By offering these grants, New York empowers municipalities to build climate resilience and safeguard their communities from the escalating impacts of climate change.

Photo Credit: gettyimages-sizsus

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Categories: New York, Government & Policy, Weather

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