WASHINGTON -- FEMA announced today it published funding notices for two hazard mitigation grant programs for $1.16 billion to combat climate change and protect underserved communities against disaster hazards.
The Flood Mitigation Assistance and the Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) provides funds to states, local communities, tribes and territories for eligible mitigation activities to strengthen our nation’s ability to build a culture of preparedness.
These pre-disaster programs fund projects that invest in a more resilient nation, reduce disaster suffering and avoid future disaster costs, particularly in disadvantaged communities in the face of more severe floods, wildfires and hurricanes. Setting a blueprint for agencies striving to implement the Justice40 Initiative, the Biden administration took steps to enhance the benefits for disadvantaged communities by ensuring they have more access to these funds. “It is critical that as we work to address climate change, we are doing so in a way that ensures equity in the delivery of our programs,” said FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell. “By altering the criteria for the programs, we aim to reach more underserved and at-risk communities, which are often disproportionately impacted by climate change, and provide them with the necessary means to make them more resilient for the next disaster.”
This follows last week’s historic announcement of the post-disaster $3.46 billion in Hazard Mitigation Grant Program assistance for hazard mitigation measures across the 59 major disaster declarations issued due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. Nearly $5 billion in new funding opportunities is now available to help communities prepare for extreme weather and climate-related disasters.
The application period for the BRIC and Flood Mitigation Assistance grants opens on Sept. 30 and the funding notices are available on Grants.gov.
Climate change has driven increased extreme weather frequency while chronic underinvestment in resilience has harmed American infrastructure. These investments will advance environmental justice, reduce community disaster vulnerability, promote individual and community safety and strengthen our ability as a nation to adapt to changing conditions.
Earlier this year, President Biden announced this year’s BRIC grant amount totaling $1 billion. Since the last funding notice, BRIC’s guiding principles have been revised to reduce future losses and promote equity, including prioritizing assistance that benefits disadvantaged communities.
FEMA expanded grant access to disadvantaged communities by refining BRIC’s project selection criteria to enable a significantly higher proportion of benefits for those most in need of investment in climate resiliency. Scoring criteria for the competitive grant program has been adjusted to incentivize mitigation actions that consider climate change and future conditions, populations impacted and economically disadvantaged rural communities. Additionally, FEMA doubled to 20 the number of communities that can receive help with project development.
The Flood Mitigation Assistance grant amount this year is $160 million. Also aligning principles with the Biden administration’s Justice40 Initiative, FEMA will use the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Social Vulnerability Index as a selection factor in its competitive scoring process for Flood Mitigation Assistance grants. This means underserved populations will receive more points for projects that benefit their communities.
Eligible applicants must apply for funding using FEMA Grants Outcomes, the agency’s grants management system. Submit applications in FEMA Grants Outcome Portal no later than 3 p.m. ET on Jan. 28, 2022. Applications received by FEMA after this deadline will not be considered for funding.
Interested applicants should contact their hazard mitigation officer for more information. For more information visit FEMA.gov.