EPA Grants Target Environmental Justice

The agency will administer $100 million in grants to cities, states, and tribal nations as part of the Biden administration’s Justice40 initiative.

1 minute read

January 12, 2023, 9:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Aerial view of port community of San Pedro, California

Communities like San Pedro, adjacent to the massive ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, face disproportionate impacts from air and water pollution. | trekandshoot / San Pedro, California

A $100 million grant package from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “the largest investment for environmental justice grants ever offered,” is aimed at helping states, cities, and tribal nations launch climate resiliency and emergency preparedness programs, particularly in underserved communities that have historically borne the brunt of pollution and the impacts of climate change. 

Molly Bolan, writing in Route Fifty, describes the program’s requirements, which include partnering with a local community organization. “Special consideration will be given to projects that focus on climate change, disaster resiliency, and emergency preparedness; initiatives in rural areas; and projects that will conduct health-impact assessments, according to a release from the agency.” The grants are part of the Justice40 initiative, a White House program that pledges to direct 40 percent or more of federal climate funding to communities that have been disproportionately affected.

As Bolan explains, “In total, the EPA expects to allocate up to $1 million for 70 projects that span three years that will, among other things, conduct home audits for lead, create health education programs, and monitor water quality, according to the agency.”

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