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Environmental Justice

Environmental Justice Small Grants Program

Since its inception in 1994, the Environmental Justice Small Grants (EJSG) Program has awarded more than $29 million in funding to over 1400 community-based organizations, tribal governments, and Native American organizations working with communities facing environmental justice issues.

The Environmental Justice Small Grants Program supports and empowers communities working on solutions to local environmental and public health issues. The program is designed to help communities understand and address exposure to multiple environmental harms and risks. Environmental Justice Small Grants fund projects up to $50,000, depending on the availability of funds in a given year. All projects are associated with at least one qualified environmental statute.

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Is My Organization Eligible?

If your organization is NOT eligible, we encourage partnering with eligible entities on an EJSG project. See the RFA for more information.  Eligible entities include:

  • Incorporated non-profit organizations—including, but not limited to, community-based organizations, grassroots organizations, environmental justice networks, faith-based organizations and those affiliated with religious institutions

  • US Territories

  • Tribal governments, either federally-recognized or state-recognized – including Alaska Native Villages; or

  • Tribal organizations

  • Freely Associated States (FAS) – including state and local governmental entities and local non-profit organizations in the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and Palau

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Requests for Applications

The Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 EJ Small Grants Request for Applications is now OPEN!  

The EJSG program awards grants that support community-driven projects designed to engage, educate, and empower communities to better understand local environmental and public health issues and develop strategies for addressing those issues, building consensus in the community, and setting community priorities.  

EPA anticipates the potential for additional funds up to $4.5 million to be made available through this funding opportunity along with the original $2.8 million of EJ funds.  These potential additional funds can be used for COVID-19 projects specifically to address clean air issues and/or training for a safe drinking water workforce.  Approximately 100 small grants will now be awarded nationwide.  Grants will be for up to $75,000 each for one-year projects. This opportunity places special emphasis on projects focusing on COVID-19 impacts, as well as climate and disaster resiliency.  Additionally, EPA is emphasizing projects addressing diesel pollution in underserved communities living near ports and railyards as part of EPA’s Ports Initiative.  Finally, to promote equitable accessibility to EPA grant funding and to assist small entities, approximately half of the total available funding under this announcement is intended to be reserved for small non-profit organizations as defined in the announcement.  For details and guidance about applying for the anticipated additional funds, see Appendix A - Guidance on American Rescue Plan (ARP) Funding in the RFA below.  Also, tune into a Zoom webinar about the anticipated ARP funds on April 26, 2021 to learn about the updates to the funding opportunity.

The EJSG Program funding is now OPENApplicants interested in either opportunity must submit proposal packages on or before June 1, 2021 to be considered for the available funding. Read the full funding solicitation document below:

Grants.gov Requirement – All applications are required to be submitted through Grants.gov. To see and apply for the funding opportunity on Grants.gov, visit the following link: View Grant Opportunity

Applicants should plan for projects to begin on October 1, 2021.

For more information, please email Jacob Burney (burney.jacob@epa.gov)

In accordance with EPA's Assistance Agreement Competition Policy (EPA Order 5700.5A1), EPA staff will not meet with individual applicants to discuss draft applications, provide informal comments on draft applications, or provide advice to applicants on how to respond to ranking criteria.

Applicants are responsible for the contents of their applications. However, consistent with the provisions in the announcement, EPA will respond to questions from individual applicants regarding threshold eligibility criteria, administrative issues related to the submission of the proposal, and requests for clarification about the announcement.

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Pre-Application Assistance Calls & Webinars

Applicants are invited to participate in conference calls  and webinars with EPA to address questions about the EJSG Program and this solicitation.

Date Time  How to Join

March 4, 2021

(EJSG Live Call)

4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (ET)

See below for the recording and transcript from the March 4, 2021 Pre-Application Assistance Call

March 10, 2021

(EJSG/EJCPS

 EJSCREEN Demo)

3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. (ET)

Call Recording Coming Soon

March 16, 2021

(EJSG Live Call)

7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. (ET)

See below for the recording and transcript from the March 16, 2021 Pre-Application Assistance Call

March 31, 2021

(EJSG Live Call en Español)

2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. (ET)

Link to Call Recording:

Playback Online
1. Click this link or paste the entire URL into your browser:
Call Recording
2. At the prompt, enter your name and email address.
3. Click "Listen".

April 26, 2021

(Live Call for EJSG and EJCPS on American Rescue Plan funding)

4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (ET)

Join ZoomGov Meeting
https://usepa.zoomgov.com/j/1619228211

Meeting ID: 161 922 8211 

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Resources

Emerging Tools for Local Problem-Solving Emerging Tools for Local Problem Solving
Description of example programs funded under the Small Grants Program.

Small Grants Program TutorialFrequently Asked Questions on Applying for EJ Small Grants
Answers to FAQs on eligibility, types of projects, funding priorities, and application requirements.

Factsheet on Environmental Justice Small Grants Program Factsheet on Environmental Justice Small Grants Program
Program overview, eligibility, and example project.

Environmental Justice Funding MapEnvironmental Justice Program Funded Projects
View 2014 to 2020 Projects.

 Previous Requests for Applications

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