EPA to award $250 million in IRA funds to reduce climate pollution
The Biden Administration will make $250 million in grants available to develop strategies to cut climate pollution, the Environmental Protection Agency announced Wednesday.
The funds are the first in $5 billion in grant funding allocated by the Inflation Reduction Act’s (IRA) Climate Pollution Reduction Grants (CPRG) program, EPA officials said on a call with reporters Tuesday evening. States, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia will be eligible to receive $3 million in grants, while the CPRG program will make a further $1 million available to the nation’s 67 most populous metropolitan areas.
Deputy EPA Administrator Janet McCabe said on the Tuesday call that another $25 million would be set aside for tribes. McCabe acknowledged states, cities and tribes are “at different starting points” on addressing pollution, adding that the funds could be used either to begin new initiatives or build on existing ones.
McCabe said the grants will likely be awarded by summer of 2023.
“We know that tackling the climate crisis demands a sense of urgency to protect people and the planet,” EPA Administrator Michael Regan said in a statement. “President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act is a historic opportunity to provide communities across the country with the resources they need to protect people from harmful climate pollution and improve our economy. These Climate Pollution Reduction Grants are an important first step to equip communities with the resources to create innovative strategies that reduce climate emissions and drive benefits across the country.”
The agency has set a March 31 deadline for notices of intent to participate at the state level, with an April 28 deadline for the 67 most populous areas. Tribes and territories will have until June 15. The administration will make another $4.6 million available later in 2023 in competitive grant funding for implementation of plans. The initial $250 million is noncompetitive.
The announcement comes the week after the agency also announced $550 million in funds to address environmental inequity through local nonprofits, following an initial round of $100 million.
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