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Improving Air Quality in Overburdened Communities Grants Program

Ecology, Department of
Title of action
Improving Air Quality in Overburdened Communities Grants Program
Date significant agency action was initiated
Wednesday, June 5, 2024
New grant or loan program
Brief description of significant agency actions for which the agency is initiating an environmental justice assessment.
Section 3 of the Climate Commitment Act, RCW 70A.65.020, requires Ecology to take actions to reduce criteria air pollutant emissions in identified overburdened communities highly impacted by air pollution. To help meet these reduction requirements, Ecology is developing and implementing a new grant program to incentivize and support the reduction of non-regulated sources of criteria pollutant emissions in communities identified to be overburdened and highly impacted by air pollution. Ecology will lead an inclusive outreach effort to engage with Tribes, local municipalities, and non-governmental organizations in these communities to seek input on the design of the grant program. $10M will be available to organizations severing these communities to engage with people in their community towards the goal of identifying and developing local projects to improve air quality. Reducing criteria air pollution will improve air quality and protect public health in overburdened and highly impacted communities and will help to reduce environmental and health disparities. This grant program is supported with funding from Washington’s Climate Commitment Act (CCA).
Methods for providing public comment for agency consideration as part of the environmental justice assessment.
We will use a variety of methods to engage with people from overburdened communities and vulnerable populations to inform this work, including inviting formal consultation with Tribes and a virtual listening session for Tribal members and staff; virtual listening sessions for organizations serving overburdened communities, including community groups and local municipalities; an online public comment period; as possible, direct outreach and education, including tabling at community events and attending existing community meetings; web content; and GovDelivery distribution list. Outreach and engagement efforts will occur in May and June 2024 and focus on the communities Ecology identified as overburdened and highly impacted by air pollution and Tribes.