California Resilience Challenge Announces Statewide Request for Proposals for Climate Adaptation Projects

Grants of up to $200,000 available to help protect under-resourced communities against wildfire, drought, flood, and extreme heat events

The Bay Area Council Foundation today (July 14) launched the official request for proposals for the California Resilience Challenge 2022 Grant Program, a statewide initiative to support innovative climate adaptation planning projects that strengthen local resilience to wildfire, drought, flood, and extreme heat events in under-resourced communities. Recipients will receive grant awards of up to $200,000 to advance climate adaptation planning projects.

Download the RFP here >>

The California Resilience Challenge 2022 Grant Program will provide resources to local communities throughout the state, including community-based organizations, cities, counties, California Native American tribes, special districts, and other local and regional jurisdictions representing under-resourced communities. By emphasizing local solutions to the global problem of climate change, communities can create scalable plans and infrastructure to meet their immediate and long-term climate adaptation needs.

“California’s climate is becoming warmer, drier, and less predictable before our very eyes.” said Jim Wunderman, President, and CEO of the Bay Area Council. “The California Resilience Challenge is using the state’s extraordinary social and geographic diversity to create some of the most innovative and inspiring climate adaptation projects in the world. We’re immensely proud and grateful for the visionary leadership of our partners in making the California Resilience Challenge 2022 Grant Program happen, and we’re excited to see what this year’s competition brings.”

The launch comes as California struggles to adapt to increasingly severe climate events. Multiple hot and dry winters have severely limited California’s snowpack, leading to dangerously low reservoirs and a statewide drought emergency; dry weather has increased the risk of catastrophic wildfires; August 2020 was the hottest month in state history; the winter of 2017-2018 was the wettest year on record for Northern California; and sea levels at the Golden Gate Bridge are projected to rise more than one foot by 2050.

Since 2020, the California Resilience Challenge has awarded over $4 million in climate resilience grants to more than two dozen communities across the state—a success made possible by the Challenge’s unique collaboration between businesses, utilities, non-profits, tribal entities, community-based organizations, and the Governor’s Office of Planning & Research.

The California Resilience Challenge is an initiative of the Bay Area Council Foundation. The 2022 Steering Committee includes representatives from JPMorgan Chase, PG&E, Southern California Edison, and Valley Water. Additional funders include Resources Legacy Fund, Bank of America, and Wareham Development.

What Leaders Are Saying

“The California Resilience Challenge continues to provide opportunities for industry leaders creating innovative climate resilience tools and resources that help protect the future of our local communities,” said Tony Tolentino, Vice President for Global Philanthropy at JPMorgan Chase. “It’s an important step towards preserving our future and we’re thrilled to continue working with the Bay Area Council and support these community leaders who are bringing solutions to diverse communities throughout California.”

“Communities across California face growing risks from a changing climate,” said Chris Benjamin, Director of Corporate Sustainability at PG&E. “As part of our triple bottom line approach to sustainability, PG&E is actively working to build climate resilience into our planning and operations, while also supporting our hometowns in their resilience plans. We encourage communities throughout the state to apply to the California Resilience Challenge and help build a more sustainable future.”

“The threat of wildfire, exacerbated by drought and high-heat events, poses increasing challenges to the communities Southern California Edison serves,” said Andrew Baldonado, the company’s Vice President of State Public Affairs. “Advancing innovative projects through the California Resilience Challenge, in conjunction with ongoing efforts to harden the electrical grid, are essential to our work to combat climate change and protect our communities from the risks it presents. SCE is proud to continue our support for the CRC to help underserved communities develop and implement resiliency solutions.”

“As California contends with a third year of drought, we must make investments in water infrastructure and technology that are resilient to climate change,” said Rick L. Callender, Chief Executive Officer of Valley Water. “That’s why Valley Water is proud to support the California Resilience Challenge. These grants will help fund innovative, local projects that help protect disadvantaged communities against extreme weather.”

Communities in Need

RFP responses are due by 5:00pm, September 14, 2022.

>> Download the RFP here.

>> Download the FAQ here.

California Resilience Challenge Contact

Anna Sciaruto

Policy Manager

Bay Area Council

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