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ICYMI: $3 million federal grant to help Michigan cut climate pollution, grow clean energy economy

During Michigan’s first MI Healthy Climate Conference this week, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) and Governor Gretchen Whitmer highlighted a $3 million planning grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The money will help develop innovative strategies to cut climate pollution and expand Michigan’s clean energy economy. In March, the U.S. EPA announced the availability of the funds from the Climate Pollution Reduction Grants (CPRG) program created by President Joe Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act.

“Michigan has the momentum and together, we will define the future of climate action, clean energy, and manufacturing,” said Governor Whitmer, who spoke about the grant at the conference. “I am grateful to EGLE for bringing leading policymakers and action takers together in Detroit for the MI Healthy Climate Conference, and I know that by fostering collaboration, we can pursue job-creating, cost-reducing climate action that will grow our economy and protect our natural resources for generations to come. We recently won a $3 million federal grant to implement the MI Healthy Climate Plan, and I proposed over $1 billion of investments in my budget to lower the cost of electric vehicles, reduce industrial emissions, and protect clean air and water in schools. I am a climate optimist because I know that In the months and years ahead, we will compete for every dollar possible from recently passed federal legislation so we can create good-paying clean energy jobs, lower emissions, and build a brighter future for our kids.”

The Mi Healthy Climate Conference, which concludes today, focuses on mobilizing action around Governor Whitmer’s climate commitments as laid out in the MI Healthy Climate Plan, a blueprint for moving Michigan forward on greenhouse gas reductions and the economic opportunities that can be created in communities from climate action across the state. Nearly 600 engaged stakeholders, community and business leaders, advocates, and other partners are participating in the conference.

“The MI Healthy Climate Plan was built with input from hundreds of Michiganders over 18 months to chart a path forward for meeting Governor Whitmer’s climate commitments culminating in statewide carbon neutrality by 2050,” said Cory Connolly, Climate and Energy Advisor at the Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy. “This federal support will refine that plan and accelerate its implementation. It also will help in engaging and receiving input from communities across Michigan, especially low-income areas that are typically hit ‘first and worst’ by climate impacts. It is vital that all Michiganders share in the protections and benefits of the Climate Plan, and this moves us toward that goal.”

CPRG planning grants will support states, territories, tribes, municipalities, and air agencies in creating comprehensive, innovative strategies for reducing pollution and ensuring that investments maximize benefits, especially for low-income and disadvantaged communities. These climate plans will include:

  • Greenhouse gas emissions inventories
  • Emissions projections and reduction targets
  • Economic, health, and social benefits, including to low-income and disadvantaged communities
  • Plans to leverage other sources of federal funding, including the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act
  • Workforce needs to support decarbonization and a clean energy economy
  • Future government staffing and budget needs

The EPA is expected to launch a competition for an additional $4.6 billion in funding to implement projects and initiatives included in the plans in the Spring of 2024, which Michigan is eligible to receive. The state can also use this funding to develop strategies for using the other grant, loan, and tax provisions secured by President Biden’s historic legislation, including the Inflation Reduction Act and Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, to achieve it clean energy, climate, and environmental justice goals.

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