Stakeholder Input Will Help Shape First-of-Its-Kind Federal Fund to Mobilize Clean Energy and Climate Projects and Reduce Pollution in Disadvantaged Communities
WASHINGTON — Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a coordinated stakeholder engagement strategy to help shape the implementation of the first-of-its-kind Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund created by President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act. EPA’s engagement strategy includes:
- Expert Input: Soliciting expert input on key program design questions from the Environmental Financial Advisory Board (EFAB);
- Request for Information: Issuing a public Request for Information to enable communities and the public to comment on the Fund’s design and implementation;
- National Listening Session Series: Launching a stakeholder listening session series to enable key stakeholders including green banks, community finance institutions, environmental justice communities, state and local governments, clean energy advocates, labor, and others to provide input directly to EPA staff on the implementation of the Fund; and
- New Webpage: Creating a website as a one-stop shop for information on the implementation of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund.
These initial engagements will help ensure the Fund’s design and implementation reflect input from a variety of diverse stakeholders to ensure the full economic and environmental benefits of this historic investment are realized by all people, particularly those who have been most burdened by environmental, social, and economic injustice.
“The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund is an unprecedented opportunity to accelerate the adoption of greenhouse gas reducing technologies and position the United States to compete and win the 21st century economy,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “In designing such an ambitious program, EPA is eager to hear from stakeholders across the country, especially in low-income and disadvantaged communities, whose voices are critical to shaping the Fund and ensuring these historic resources reach people who need them most. Coupled with the additional resources from President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, the Fund will deliver environmental and economic benefits across the country.”
The historic Inflation Reduction Act represents the most aggressive action to confront the climate crisis in our nation’s history. The Inflation Reduction Act established the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund – a $27 billion fund that will provide competitive grants to states, local governments, tribes and eligible non-profit financing institutions to mobilize financing and leverage private capital for clean energy and climate projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, with an emphasis on projects that benefit low-income and disadvantaged communities – and help advance the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to environmental justice. EPA will seek input on the types of entities, projects and financial structures that will best achieve the program objectives.
Soliciting Expert Input from the Environmental Finance Advisory Board (EFAB)
EPA delivered a set of formal charge questions for expert review and comment at the October 18-19th meeting of the Environmental Finance Advisory Board (EFAB). EFAB is a Federal Advisory Committee that provides advice and recommendations to EPA’s Administrator and regional and program offices on ways to lower the costs of, and increase investments in, environmental and public health protection. The EFAB includes a number of experts on clean energy and climate finance, including leaders of green banks and community financial institutions; state and local government officials; business and industry representatives; and members of environmental, tribes and non-governmental organizations, among others. The EFAB will provide its advice and recommendation on the charge questions by December 15, 2022.
Issuing a Request for Information
This week EPA published a Request for Information (RFI) seeking public comment on core design aspects of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund. The notice has been published on EPA’s website and on Regulations.gov. The public will have 45 days to respond to the RFI.
Launching a National Listening Session Series
In the coming weeks, EPA will commence a series of listening sessions to allow members of the public and key stakeholder groups to provide insights to EPA staff on the implementation of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund.
The series will begin with two public sessions in November. In addition, beyond engaging with the EFAB, EPA will meet with other expert advisory committees, including the Local Government Advisory Committee, the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council, the National Environmental Justice Advisory Council, and other stakeholders to solicit input on the design of the Fund.
The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 amended the Clean Air Act to create a new program, the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund, which will deploy $27 billion in competitive grants to mobilize financing for clean energy and climate projects that reduce or avoid greenhouse gas emissions, especially in disadvantaged communities. The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund includes:
- $7 billion for competitive grants to enable low-income and disadvantaged communities to deploy or benefit from zero-emission technologies, including distributed technologies on residential rooftops;
- nearly $12 billion for competitive grants to eligible entities to provide financial and technical assistance to projects that reduce or avoid greenhouse gas emissions; and
- $8 billion for competitive grants to eligible entities to provide financial and technical assistance to projects that reduce or avoid greenhouse gas emissions in low-income and disadvantaged communities.