EPA Environmental Justice Small Grant Program

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Environmental Justice Small Grants program provides financial assistance to community-based organizations, and local and tribal governments working on projects to address environmental and public health concerns. The program uses grants to strengthen community-based programs that engage overburdened communities and build partnerships to promote environmental well-being and improve public health. Applicants are encouraged to develop innovative projects that focus on climate resiliency and adaptation in communities with environmental justice concerns.

EPA recognizes "the critical role of helping communities with localized strategies to avoid, lessen, or delay the risks and impacts associated with our changing climate." As a result, the 2015 program had a special emphasis on proposals supporting community-based climate change preparedness and resilience efforts. 

Funding will be used to support projects that address environmental justice and climate change impacts, including but not limited to:

  • reducing asthma attacks;
  • reducing exposure to air toxics;
  • increasing compliance with regulations;
  • reducing the incidence of elevated blood lead levels;
  • creating green jobs;
  • energy efficiencies;
  • reducing carbon emissions; and
  • green business.

In 2015, a grant was provided to the Regional Environmental Council of Worcester, Massachusetts for a project entitled: Greening Our Gardens -Urban Growing Strategies for Climate Resiliency. The project will promotes efficient water use, storm water run-off prevention, and the use of gardening practices that can contribute to climate resiliency, including carbon sequestration. REC’s project also seeks to increase access to healthy food in Worcester’s lowest-income/highest risk neighborhoods through an educational program for urban gardeners in Worcester, MA.


Publication Date: 1994

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