PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — As part of a $7.8 million grant to support local community flood preparedness across the Commonwealth, 11 projects in the Hampton Roads area were awarded funds to address impacts of flooding, sea-level rise, and extreme weather statewide.
“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 funds, financed by the sale of carbon emission allowances under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, aim to assist communities in building resilience to the impacts of climate change, including floods, with targeted funding going to vulnerable and underserved communities.
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.
The program prioritizes projects that utilize nature-based solutions that include planning and capacity building activities, flood prevention and protection studies, and on-the-ground improvements that strengthen flood resilience.
“Nature-based solutions often are the most effective and affordable ways of mitigating flood damage,” said Secretary of Natural and Historic Resources Ann Jennings. “These strategies also can improve water quality and wildlife habitat. It’s exciting that more than half the projects being funded in this first round of Community Flood Preparedness grants will incorporate nature-based solutions into flood mitigation.”
The following local Hampton Roads projects were awarded money:
- Eastern Branch of Elizabeth River Wetland and Floodplain Restoration | $3,000,000
- Norfolk Coastal Storm Risk Management Analysis | $900,000
- Portsmouth’s Data-Driven and Equity-Driven Resilience Strategy | $527,949
- Lake Whitehurst Watershed Study | $500,000
- Resilient Hampton: Downton Hampton, Phoebus and Buckroe Beach | $158,681
- Honor Park Resilience Park | $147,994
- Mill Point Living Shoreline | $126,498
- Southern Chesapeake – Watershed 5 | $91,404
- Resilience Plan | $74,997
- Capacity Building and Planning | $68,024
- The Impacts of Climate Change on Crop Planning and Production: An Agricultural Study of the Eastern Shore | $47,121