Climate change is a serious issue that all levels of government in Canada must work to solve. Federal, provincial, and even municipal governments all have a significant role to play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) so that Canadians retain a high quality of life now and into the future. Even the longevity of community infrastructure will be directly linked to climate change reduction planning and implementation.
Fortunately, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) has begun administering a new government funding program in support of climate change initiatives. The Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program (MCIP) provides up to 80% of project costs to a maximum $175,000 in funding for climate change projects. Government grants may be awarded to any Canadian municipality with an eligible upcoming climate-themed project.
The Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program is currently accepting applications for two of its three streams. Communities may apply for grants to offset the cost of planning and studies; however, funding will not be available to reduce the cost of demonstration projects until mid-late 2017.
Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program: Funding Streams
There are three streams of funding provided through the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program. All streams provide up to 80% of eligible project costs to a maximum $175,000 and focus on the impacts of climate change and ways to reduce GHGs.
These grants for municipalities will cover a wide range of projects, including:
Development of Climate Change Plans
- GHG Emission Reduction and Community Energy Plans: Planning to regulate the amount of greenhouse gasses produced in the municipality through setting, revising, and acting on emission standards.
- Transportation and Land Use Plan: Reducing the amount of greenhouse gas emissions created by fleets of municipal vehicles, such as snow plows, busses, police vehicles, and waste collection vehicles.
- Climate Change Adaptation Plans: Climate change risk, vulnerability and responsiveness planning to ensure climate change doesn’t significantly impact the health and function of a municipality.
Studies of Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation
- Energy Use Studies: Funds feasibility or operational studies associated with any project that could lead to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. This stream covers a wide range of projects, including facility retrofits, generating renewable energy sources, and enacting policy changes to become more energy efficient.
- Transportation Studies: Funds feasibility or operational studies associated with upgrading/updating municipal vehicle fleets, or introducing new transportation networks (such as sidewalks and bike lanes) to reduce GHGs.
- Water Studies: Funds feasibility or operational studies associated with drinking or wastewater treatment facilities, including how water is distributed across the municipality.
- Solid Waste Studies: Funds feasibility or operational studies associated with the anaerobic treatment and management of solid waste or landfill gas capture.
- Extreme Temperature Studies: Funds feasibility or operational studies to adapt to extreme temperature events such as rising temperatures or heat waves. This could include the development of ‘cool roofs’, building facilities to accommodate at-risk residents on days with extreme temperatures, and reducing vulnerability to forest fires.
- Flooding and Drought Studies: Funds feasibility or operational studies to help municipalities identify ways to adapt to flooding, water scarcity or drought. This may include the analysis of sewer networks, managing natural resources such as wetlands and creeks, and creating permeable surfaces to reduce water runoff.
- Wind Studies: Funds feasibility or operational studies to adapt to extreme wind events such as tornadoes, hail and windstorms or enhanced wind loads. This could include retrofitting buildings to become more wind-resistant, or developing plans to manage and recover from extreme wind events more easily.
- Community Initiative Studies: Funds feasibility or operational studies associated with the development of community-based GHG reduction programs, including residential housing retrofits and provision of backyard composting bins.
Demonstration of Climate Change Mitigation Adaptation Studies
Municipal government grants will soon be available in support of climate change strategy demonstration projects, however, there is no date currently available to denote when applications may be submitted.
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) is committed to providing this funding later in 2017; those with projects that may be a good fit should consider waiting for a couple of months until this funding is available.
Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program: Eligible Applicants
The Municipalities for Climate Change Innovation Program is open to application by municipal governments across Canada. Municipalities do not need to be a member of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) to apply.
Only municipal governments may be awarded climate change grants through MCIP. Any form of project partnership will not be considered.
Feasibility Studies and Planning Projects
Municipal government grants may be awarded to single municipalities, or municipal partnerships including:
- The municipal government (lead applicant); and
- Either a first nations community, non-profit organization, or a regional, provincial, or territorial organization providing municipal services.
How to Apply for the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program
Applications for the 5-year (2017-2022) climate change funding program will be accepted on a continuous basis.
Applicants are required to complete a budget, workplan, and program application form to be considered for funding. It can take up to two months from submission to become approved.
To check if your project is eligible for funding and accelerate the application process, please contact Mentor Works.
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