Skip to main content

EGLE announces $20 million available for Michigan’s first ever Environmental Justice Impact Grants

New grant program from the Office of the Environmental Justice Public Advocate aims to help Michigan’s EJ communities meet environmental, health challenges

Aviso en Español

إعلان باللغة العربية

Reducing environmental health burdens in Michigan’s Environmental Justice communities is the goal of a new $20 million Environmental Justice Impact Grant program offered by the Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy’s (EGLE) Office of the Environmental Justice Public Advocate (OEJPA).  These resources were made possible by the Michigan Legislature and Governor Gretchen Whitmer, in the fiscal year 2024 budget.

“Every Michigander deserves clean air to breathe and safe water to drink,” said Governor Whitmer. “Today’s Environmental Justice Impact Grants will be invested into communities facing disproportionate environmental and public health challenges. The grants can be used for a variety of purposes from removing old, contaminated buildings to protecting air quality in schools to supporting local public health initiatives. Together, we’re taking action to make Michigan an even better place to live, work, and invest.”

EGLE Director Phil Roos said this is a continuation of the agency’s work to support Michigan communities in addressing health and environmental challenges.

“Half of EGLE’s budget flows back to communities in the form of grants and loans to help address environmental and public health challenges,” said Roos. “Nowhere is the need more evident than in neighborhoods that have been disproportionately impacted by pollution – and those are too often in communities of color and in places without the financial resources to adequately address harmful impacts. Our new Environmental Justice Impact Grants will offer direct support for these communities in hopes of reducing some of the environmental injustices they face every day.” 

Applications for place-based and equity-focused projects are open now. Applicants can propose and apply for community projects designed to improve local public health, monitor pollution, remove blight and clean up contamination, and enhance indoor air quality in schools and childcare facilities. Eligible applicants include federally recognized tribes; community-based nonprofits (including grassroots and frontline organizations), local governments, schools, and childcare centers. Each applicant is eligible to apply for up to $500,000. The funds will be awarded by early September 2024. Applications must be received by July 15, 2024. 

“Addressing historical inequities is an important part of EGLE’s mission and the reason our office exists,” said Regina Strong, head of the OEJPA. “For the first time we have an opportunity to directly fund projects to address Environmental Justice concerns. I am excited that we are offering support designed to have a direct impact in communities.” 

On top of this Environmental Justice specific grant opportunity, the State has also committed to utilizing the Biden Administration’s Justice40 policy, which ensures that at least 40 percent of the overall benefits of certain state and federal investments flow to Environmental Justice and disadvantaged communities.

The OEJPA was created by executive order of Governor Gretchen Whitmer in 2019. It serves as an external and internal advocate and catalyst of ensuring Environmental Justice is prioritized throughout state programs and in communities across the state.

Additional information on OEJPA’s efforts can be found at

Learn more information on the Environmental Justice Impact Grant opportunity, including application guidance and criteria.

Media Contact: