Gov. Northam announces $24.5 million in flood grants
RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam has announced $24.5 million in grants awarded from the Virginia Community Flood Preparedness Fund, made possible with funding from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Thirty applications from 22 local government organizations will receive grants to build capacity, plan, and begin projects to address the effects of recurrent flooding, sea-level rise, and extreme weather.
“With this second round of awards, Virginia continues its efforts to combat flooding — the most common and costly natural hazard we face,” said Governor Northam. “The Community Flood Preparedness Fund will provide an estimated $75 million a year to improve the resilience of our Commonwealth, including targeted funding for Virginia’s most vulnerable and underserved communities. This funding is only possible because of our participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, which continues to lower costs for families facing severe weather and frequent floods.”
Grants are financed by the sale of carbon emission allowances under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, or RGGI, a collaborative effort among Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states to combat climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the energy sector, while also driving economic growth. Virginia is the first southern state to join RGGI, which is expected to generate more than $1 billion for energy efficiency and flood protection projects. Since earlier this year the Community Flood Preparedness Fund has provided more than $32.3M in funding to local communities with more than 72 percent of all funding going to low-income geographic areas.
“Virginia’s efforts to join the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative are paying off,” said Secretary of Natural and Historic Resources Ann Jennings. “The Community Flood Preparedness Fund is helping Virginia address the threat of floods caused by a warming climate.”
The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, in cooperation with the Virginia Resources Authority, administers the fund and grant program, DCR oversees the state’s floodplain management program.
“DCR is excited about the opportunities the Community Flood Preparedness Fund will provide to local communities to address their flooding needs,” said DCR Director Clyde Cristman. Information about the fund, eligibility rules, application procedures, and instructions are available in the fund’s grant manual, posted at www.dcr.virginia.gov/cfpf.
The Community Flood Preparedness Fund continues to prioritize projects that are in concert with local, state, and federal floodplain management standards, local resilience plans, and the Virginia Coastal Resilience Master Plan. “The Fund will be critical to implementing future projects associated with the Virginia Coastal Resilience Master Plan,” said Ann C. Phillips, Special Assistant to the Governor for Coastal Adaptation and Protection.