Today U.S. Senator Charles Schumer (D) announced $50 million in federal funding, distributed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and its Environmental Justice Thriving Communities Grantmaking program, for Fordham University to serve as a Regional Environmental Justice Thriving Communities Grantmaker.
Fordham will award subgrants to community-based organizations leading environmental justice projects. The university will prioritize awarding grants to initiatives focused on workforce development, public and environmental health, coastal resilience, community access to and revitalization of green spaces and waterways, clean energy transition, sustainable transportation, and more key environmental justice areas.
These federal funds were secured by Senator Schumer in the Inflation Reduction Act, the largest investment in environmental and climate justice in U.S. history. Through the Inflation Reduction Act, EPA received billions to award grants to benefit disadvantaged communities.
“From the ground up and the sky down, it is all hands on deck to fight the carbon pollution driving climate change and causing devastating extreme weather events. And this first-of-its-kind effort, that I made sure we amply funded in the Inflation Reduction Act, to directly invest in the grassroots environmental justice groups on the frontlines of the climate fight, is a critical element of that effort,” said U.S. Senator Charles Schumer.
“Today’s announcement from EPA regarding grant money for grassroots environmental justice groups showcases exactly why I fought so hard for the Inflation Reduction Act,” said Schumer. “This $50 million for our own Fordham University, and $600 million for 11 regional grantmakers across the country, that is distributed to community-based non-profits fighting on the frontlines of climate change, is the kind of program that can help our disadvantaged communities truly flourish. I am proud of Fordham University and I am so excited to see how the vibrant network of New York and Puerto Rican grassroots environmental justice organizations leverage this federal funding. I remain laser-focused on implementation of the IRA so that we can ensure it lives up to its transformative potential to clean our air and combat climate change.”
“These grants are seeds for our communities that will grow into a cleaner, healthier, more resilient and just future,” Schumer added.
Fordham University will work with EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice and External Civil Rights to issue subgrants to community-based nonprofit organizations and other eligible organizations representing disadvantaged communities, according to the EPA. The subgrants are expected to be available by summer of 2024. Grantmakers, like Fordham, and Environmental Justice Thriving Communities Technical Assistance Centers, will support eligible applicants through the process.
Fordham will focus on awarding subgrants to projects on workforce development and student success for the green economy; capacity-building for grassroots community-based organizations; public and environmental health; coastal resilience; community access to and revitalization of green spaces, waterways and underutilized areas; clean energy transition; biodiversity and conservation; sustainable transportation; and sustainable agriculture, food systems and food security.