WASHINGTON — Today, the US Environmental Protection Agency joined the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) of North America to announce that the $2 million Environmental Justice for Climate (EJ4Climate) grant program is now open for applications. This cycle of EJ4Climate grants will focus on projects in Canada, Mexico, and the United States that integrate community-led environmental education in support of environmental justice and community resilience to climate-related impacts, with up to C$200,000 in grant funding available for recipients.
The EJ4Climate grant program was initiated by US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael S. Regan in 2021, with the aim of funding projects that support underserved and vulnerable communities, and Indigenous communities, on the front lines of climate change. Last year’s program saw the selection of 15 grant recipients from 375 proposals received from across the three countries.
“As the impacts of the climate crisis grow more severe, it’s crucial that we ensure protections for our most vulnerable populations and develop durable, community-driven solutions,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “I’m so proud to join our CEC partners as we launch the second round of the EJ4Climate grant program and support projects that foster climate resilience and advance environmental justice across North America.”
The EJ4Climate grant program welcomes projects that, for example, address extreme weather impacts, support the transition to clean energy and/or transportation systems, conduct conservation or restoration works, or employ traditional ecological knowledge to address climate change impacts. Eligible applicants range from nonprofit and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), civil society groups, environmental groups and community-based associations to faith-based organizations, tribal nations, and Indigenous Peoples and communities.
In line with this grant cycle’s theme, priority will be given to projects by community-based organizations that significantly integrate formal or informal community-led environmental education approaches in their design and implementation plans. These approaches include, but are not limited to:
- hands-on activities and place-based learning
- citizen-science initiatives
- knowledge exchange with elders
- training and capacity building
- awareness campaigns
- involvement of youth as agents of change
Proposals are due by November 11, 2022, with the implementation for selected projects to begin in March 2023.
About the CEC
The Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) was established in 1994 by the governments of Canada, Mexico and the United States through the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation, a parallel environmental agreement to NAFTA. As of 2020, the CEC is recognized and maintained by the Environmental Cooperation Agreement, in parallel with the new Free Trade Agreement of North America. The CEC brings together a wide range of stakeholders, including the general public, Indigenous people, youth, nongovernmental organizations, academia, and the business sector, to seek solutions to protect North America’s shared environment while supporting sustainable development for the benefit of present and future generations
The CEC is governed and funded equally by the Government of Canada through Environment and Climate Change Canada, the Government of the United States of Mexico through the Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales, and the Government of the United States of America through the Environmental Protection Agency.