The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency launched a $4.6 billion competition to fund state, local, and Tribal programs and policies that cut climate pollution, advance environmental justice, and deploy clean energy solutions across the country. As part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, a key pillar of Bidenomics, EPA’s Climate Pollution Reduction Grants competition will enable community-driven solutions to the climate crisis, helping to accelerate America’s clean energy transition. The announcement comes during Climate Week 2023 in New York City – an annual gathering of civil society leaders, business leaders, students, and advocates who are committed to taking bold climate action.
The new competition is the second tranche of funding from EPA’s $5 billion Climate Pollution Reduction Grants program, which was created by President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act – the largest climate investment in history. EPA has already made $250 million available to fund the development of climate action plans, and nearly all states, plus major cities opted in to receive these flexible planning resources. The $4.6 billion implementation grant competition launched today will fund initiatives developed under the first phase of the program.
“These grants will enable states, tribes, and territories in our Pacific Southwest region to take bold new steps to reduce greenhouse gases and local air pollution,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Martha Guzman. “We are proud to support ongoing efforts to reduce emissions, mitigate climate change impacts, advance environmental justice, and transition to a clean energy economy.”
“EPA’s Climate Pollution Reduction Grants program recognizes that to tackle the climate crisis and advance environmental justice, communities need to be in the driver’s seat steering toward their own clean energy future,” said John Podesta, Senior Advisor to the President for Clean Energy Innovation and Implementation. “It’s why these state, local, and Tribal grants are such an important part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda.”
State and local action is vital to deliver on President Biden’s commitment to reduce climate pollution by 50-52 percent by 2030. The CPRG program will enable states and local and tribal governments to take aggressive action to combat climate change by funding measures that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, especially measures that would bring economic and health benefits to low-income and disadvantaged communities.
This program will reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and other harmful air pollution for the health and wellbeing of everyone, including those most vulnerable to the flooding, heat waves, wildfires, and other destabilizing impacts of climate change on communities.
The CPRG program will also advance President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative, which aims to ensure 40 percent of the overall benefits of certain climate, clean energy, and other Federal investments flow to disadvantaged communities that have been marginalized by underinvestment and overburdened by pollution. Justice40 is part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s historic commitment to environmental justice.
The Climate Pollution Reduction Grants Competition
EPA is announcing the availability of $4.6 billion across two implementation grant competitions, one general competition and one specifically for Tribes and territories. Under these competitions, eligible applicants will compete for CPRG implementation grants to fund measures in their state-, municipality-, Tribe-, or territory-specific climate action plans. As part of its evaluation of applications, EPA will prioritize measures that achieve the greatest amount of GHG emissions reductions.
In the grants competitions announced today, EPA describes how the agency intends to score applications and award the competitive funds to implementation grant recipients. EPA anticipates awarding approximately 30 to 115 grants ranging between $2 million and $500 million under the general competition. EPA also anticipates awarding approximately 25 to 100 grants ranging between $1 million and $25 million under the Tribes and territories competition.
The deadline to apply to the general competition is April 1, 2024. The deadline to apply to the Tribes and territories competition is May 1, 2024.
EPA estimates that the implementation grants will be awarded in Fall 2024 for the general competition and in Winter 2024-2025 for the Tribes and territories competition.