Accomack and Northampton Included

RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam  announced $7.8 million in grants to support 19 local projects that address impacts of flooding, sea-level rise, and extreme weather statewide.

The grants are the first to be awarded through the Virginia Community Flood Preparedness Fund. The Governor and General Assembly established the fund in 2020 to assist communities in building resilience to the impacts of climate change, including floods, with targeted funding going to vulnerable and underserved communities.

The fund is financed by the sale of carbon emission allowances under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Virginia joined the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative in January 2021.

“Virginians have experienced the devastating effects of flooding over and over again,” said Governor Northam. “Without strong investments in resiliency, we will continue to see more of the same. The Community Flood Preparedness Fund grants are so important because they will jumpstart projects in more than a dozen localities, including some that have been impacted by recent disasters.”

The Community Flood Preparedness Fund is allocated 45 percent of the revenue Virginia generates through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. An estimated $75 million per year will be available through the matching grant program.

At least 25 percent of the money distributed from the fund each year must be used for projects in low-income geographic areas. For this grant cycle, 48 percent, or $3.7 million, of total awards has been allocated to projects in these areas.

Eligible projects areas include planning and capacity building activities, flood prevention and protection studies, and on-the-ground improvements that strengthen flood resilience. The program prioritizes projects that utilize nature-based solutions.

Northampton will receive a grant of  $202,232 for an Oyster Plan Capacity and Resilience Planning.  The Accomack-Northampton Planning District Commission received $47,121 for a study on the impacts of climate change on crop planning and production.