RICHMOND, Va. – Virginia has submitted four applications to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Coastal Resilience Grants Program. This grant encourages coastal communities to prepare for, respond to, recover from, and/or adapt to extreme weather events and climate-related hazards. The program also supports community resilience in areas that have been impacted by rising sea levels, depleted fisheries and water quality issues.
NOAA anticipates awarding approximately $15 million nationwide, although funds are subject to fiscal year 2017 appropriations. Individual grants will range from $100,000 to $2 million for projects lasting up to three years. NOAA will award the grants to implement innovative resilience projects that better prepare coastal communities for future storms and other extreme events, including the impacts of long-term climate change.
Virginia has previously received these types of competitive grants. In fiscal year 2016, the City of Virginia Beach was awarded $844,847 to prioritize and implement strategies to address rising sea-level impacts on land use and development such as the relocation or construction of infrastructure. That year, NOAA was only able to fund 10 percent of the proposed projects.
Virginia submitted several resilience initiatives to help the coastal region plan for and mitigate the effects of rising sea levels and recurrent flooding. Governor McAuliffe signed a letter of support for each grant application.
“I know the projects submitted to this grant will markedly enhance resilience and improve vulnerabilities, not just along Virginia’s coastal region, but throughout the Commonwealth,” said Governor McAuliffe. “Our coastal communities are key to the economic vitality of Virginia as a whole. We cannot afford to neglect our duty to prepare for these types of impacts.”
“Resilience is a team effort,” said Virginia’s Chief Resilience Officer and Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran. “This is an issue that affects all sectors of society and knows no jurisdictional bounds. This grant is great opportunity to promote resilience throughout the region and deal with the very real threat of rising sea-levels and recurrent flooding.”
The secretary’s office, along with the Office of the Secretary of Natural Resources and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, assisted in coordinating the grant applications, working with local and academic partners to ensure all proposals will benefit the regions as a whole.
NOAA aims to award successful applications by Oct. 1, 2017.
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March 20, 2017
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