Connecticut plans climate change projects with Cut Inflation Act money
Connecticut is hit with more severe weather. On Monday, state and local leaders rolled out a series of projects to fight climate change, using millions of dollars from the new federal Inflation Reduction Act.
The announcement was made along the banks of the Saugatuck River in Westport, a community that is more often flooded.
“Downtown has recently experienced flooding in a number of different storms,” said Jen Tooker, Westport’s first Republican coach.
But help is on the way – from Washington. Connecticut cities can apply for a $2.6 billion share of national climate resilience funds.
“There’s no shortage of projects, including right here in this community, that could potentially benefit,” said state Rep. Jonathan Steinberg (D-Westport).
And it’s not just Westport. Stratford restores the swamps – a critical buffer during the northeast. New Haven uses “rain gardens” to absorb runoff. And across the state, stormwater upgrades are coming.
“There are examples all over the state where we have developed these measures,” said Katie Dykes, commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. “And now, with these dollars, we can put this on steroids.”
You can also save money. Homeowners can get big discounts on new heating and cooling systems, heat pumps, appliances, and solar panels.
“You’ll save money,” said Senator Richard Blumenthal. “Your heating and cooling costs will go down.”
In Westport, Tooker wants to add foliage around city car parks to prevent flooding. They just need the money.
“The things we’re looking to do from an upgrade perspective are incredibly expensive and incredibly complex,” she said.
Cities must apply for the money from Washington in the form of competitive grants. To help them identify projects and quickly prepare their proposals, DEEP is spending $10 million