The Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving Cooperative Agreement Program
The Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving (EJCPS) Cooperative Agreement Program provides financial assistance to eligible organizations working to address local environmental or public health issues in their communities. The program assists recipients in building collaborative partnerships with other stakeholders (e.g., local businesses and industry, local government, medical service providers, academia, etc.) to develop solutions to environmental or public health issue(s) at the community level.
The EJCPS Program requires selected applicants, or recipients, to use the EPA's Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving Model to address local environmental or public health issues in a collaborative manner with various stakeholders such as communities, industry, academic institutions, and others. The case studies listed in the resources section below highlight some of the successful strategies of previous projects.
- Is My Organization Eligible?
- Requests for Applications
- Pre-Application Assistance Calls and Webinars
Is My Organization Eligible?
Eligible entities include:
- a community-based nonprofit organization (CBO); or
- a partnership of community-based nonprofit organizations *
* A partnership must be documented with a signed Letter of Commitment from the community-based nonprofit organization detailing the parameters of the partnership, as well as the role and responsibilities of the partnering community-based organizations.
Request for Applications
EPA is solicitating applications for projects that support community-based nonprofit organizations (CBOs) in their collaboration with other stakeholders (e.g., local businesses and industry, local government, medical service providers, academia, etc.) to develop solutions that significantly address environmental or public health issue(s) in communities disproportionately burdened by environmental harms. This competition is being launched in order to meet the goals and objectives of two Executive Orders (EO 14008 and EO 13985) issued by the Biden Administration that demonstrate the EPA’s and Administration’s commitment to achieving environmental justice and embedding environmental justice into Agency programs.
The 2022 Inflation Reduction Act created the Environmental and Climate Justice block grant program in section 138 of the Clean Air Act (CAA) and provided EPA with $2.8 billion in grant funding for the program for projects to benefit communities with environmental justice concerns.
The EJCPS Program anticipates awarding approximately $30,000,000 of Inflation Reduction Act funding through 83 cooperative agreements, organized in two tracks of funding, as follows:
- $25,000,000 for CBOs proposing projects for up to $500,000 each. Approximately 50 awards for up $500,000 each are anticipated under this track.
- $5,000,000 for qualifying small CBOs with 5 or fewer full-time employees proposing projects for up to $150,000 each. For more details about this opportunity, please review closely the “Small Community-based Nonprofit Set Aside”. Approximately 33 awards for up to $150,000 each are anticipated under this track.
Cooperative agreements will be funded for a three-year performance period.
NOTE: EPA cannot extend the performance periods for EJCPS assistance agreements utilizing Inflation Reduction Act fundings beyond three years.
Consistent with section 138(b)(2) of the Clean Air Act, applications submitted in response to this funding opportunity must address one of the following five broad categories:
- community-led air and other pollution monitoring, prevention, and remediation, and investments in low- and zero-emission and resilient technologies and related infrastructure and workforce development that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other air pollutants;
- mitigating climate and health risks from urban heat islands, extreme heat, wood heater emissions, and wildfire events;
- climate resiliency and adaptation;
- reducing indoor toxics and indoor air pollution; or
- facilitating engagement of marginalized communities in Local, State and Federal public processes, such as advisory groups, workshops, and rulemakings
Review the Amended EJCPS Request for Applications for specific guidance and eligible project examples. (pdf)
Description of Changes to EJCPS Request for Applications. (pdf)
To apply for this opportunity, view the RFA on Grants.gov. Applications packages must be submitted on or before April 14, 2023 at 11:59 PM (Eastern Time). Applicants should plan for projects to begin on November 1, 2023.
For more information, please contact Jacob Burney.
Informational Video on the Environmental and Climate Justice Communities Grants Program
Pre-Application Assistance Calls & Webinars
Applicants were invited to participate in conference calls and webinars with EPA to address questions about the CPS Program and this solicitation.
EJCPS Live Webinars
- Recording of the February 2, 2023 EJCPS webinar
- Passcode: 46598050
- Slides from the February 2, 2023 EJCPS webinar (pdf)
- Recording of the January 24, 2023 EJCPS webinar
- Passcode: 85564988
- Slides from the January 24, 2023 EJCPS webinar (pdf)
If EPA schedules any additional assistance webinars, details will be posted here and sent out by the EPA-EJ Listserv and the EPA Environmental Justice and External Civil Rights Twitter account.
- Frequently Asked Questions for the FY2023 EJCPS opportunity (pdf)
- Review previous project descriptions by state or review project descriptions by year.
- Review prior year requests for applications (RFAs).
- EPA’s Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving Model Guide (pdf)
- Case Studies from the Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving Program (pdf)
- Fact Sheet on Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving Cooperative Agreement Program (pdf)
- Informational Video on the Environmental and Climate Justice Communities Grants Program
- Environmental Justice Program Funded Projects (2014 to 2020).
- The Power of Partnerships: 45-minute video of EPA's EJ CPS Model at work in Spartanburg, SC featuring interviews of key EJ stakeholders and community members explaining their roles in successfully addressing EJ concerns in the area.