Today, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas, FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell, and Senior Advisor to the President and White House Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu announced project selections for nearly $3 billion in climate resilience funding as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda. The selections, through two competitive grant programs, will help communities across the nation enhance resilience to climate change and extreme weather events.
Today’s selections include $1.8 billion for critical resilience projects funded by the Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) national competition and $642 million for Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) community- scale flood mitigation projects. These selections build on $160 million in BRIC and FMA selections that FEMA announced in May for efforts to support mitigation projects, project scoping, and adoption of hazard-resistant building codes. Combined, the funds awarded this grant cycle of the BRIC and FMA programs total nearly $3 billion including management costs.
“We are extremely pleased to announce that projects in Connecticut, Maine and Massachusetts have been selected for this innovative federal funding,” said FEMA Region I Regional Administrator Lori Ehrlich. “Under President Biden’s Administration and through Administrator Criswell’s leadership, FEMA has made climate change a top priority and we continue to make progress to ensure communities become more resilient with critical mitigation projects like these.”
“From Hawaii to Maine, communities across the country are experiencing more frequent and intense severe weather events, resulting in devastating impacts to their homes, businesses, and families. Though FEMA will always help communities respond and recover to these disasters, it is also paramount to build resilience before disasters strike,” said FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell. “Thanks to President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, we can further our mission to help our state, local, territorial, and tribal partners build a more resilient nation.”
The top five primary hazard sources of the projects selected in the national competition for each program include flooding, infrastructure failure, fire, drought and dam or levee break hazards.
Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities
Connecticut, Maine and Massachusetts received BRIC selections for a total of $132.62 million. In addition, Maine received a selection for the first time.
This includes critical mitigation projects and activities – three of which use nature-based solutions to reduce natural hazard risks for states, local communities, tribes and territories. Nature-based solutions are sustainable planning, design, environmental management and engineering practices that weave natural features or processes into the built environment to promote adaptation and resilience.
One project selection is the Saco, Maine Water Resource Recovery Project. The project aims to make improvements to the city’s wastewater treatment plant, including the addition of a berm and the construction of structures at an elevation 3 feet above the 100-year flood elevation or base flood elevation (BFE). The project would reduce risk to the city and an estimated 12,206 residential users served by the wastewater treatment plant.
This new wastewater treatment project will reduce combined sewer overflow discharge, incorporate drainage improvements throughout the site, reclaim green space for community use, and mitigate cascading impacts of climate change in accordance with York County’s Hazard Mitigation Plan.
Learn more about the selected projects on the BRIC webpage on FEMA.gov.
Additional information about the funding
President Biden has continued to provide additional funding to FEMA’s annual resilience grant programs, increasing them from $700 million to $1.16 billion during his first year in office to nearly tripling it in the 2022 funding cycle, $900 million of which came from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The increased amount allows FEMA to diversify its geographic scope in funding selections and get more federal funds to communities needing it the most to become safer from the effects of climate change.