While the database provides valuable information and guidance, it requires periodic re-evaluation in order to ensure it is being applied using current standards and criteria. For instance, many new and continuing programs under the BIL are set to announce application criteria and timelines later this year.
“We are witnessing a golden opportunity for agencies that have not done this before, have not been successful on past attempts, or lack staff and resources to pursue innovative climate resilience projects and programs,” Akiyama said. “We can never be sure what will happen over the next few years, and funding streams can take time. So, acting sooner rather than later may be critical.”
Because of continuous changes in the way the funding is awarded, the database WSP developed is updated regularly, responding to changes and announcements to provide more timely guidance.
“Whenever big spending bills are passed and new resilience funding becomes available, WSP is able to keep our clients updated,” Geraghty said. “There is always the potential for unexpected changes to deadlines, award amounts, and grant requirements, so it is important to keep the information up to date.”
Often, project developers are not aware that they might qualify for funding from multiple sources. When this opportunity arrives, it lowers further the amount of community funding needed to complete a project’s budget. The key is to know where to look, and to be able to identify where such opportunities are possible.
“Diversity of funding sources is a big part of what can be accomplished, and it can start with this tool,” Akiyama said. “Many champions for these smaller projects may feel that they don’t have a shot at federal funding when going up against the resources of a large department of transportation or other large agencies. But that is not the case.”
“WSP has been helping with planning, with grant writing, and with the guidance necessary to help them identify all possibilities and give life and hope to these community-resilience projects,” Geraghty added.
UN Climate Change Conference (Nov. 6-18)
WSP is all in for the United Nations (UN) Climate Change Conference (COP27) this year in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. The firm’s delegation is working in close collaboration with the UN Climate Champions team and numerous partners, including the International Coalition for Sustainable Infrastructure, Resilience Rising, Resilience First, the Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment and the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure.
WSP is helping shape the discourse and presenting on a wide range of topics — the future of funding the net-zero transition, realizing infrastructure’s resilience dividend, mainstreaming nature-based solutions and integrating green infrastructure into grey — and supporting the Resilience Breakthroughs implementation labs across the spectrum of impact systems: food & agriculture, water & nature, human settlements, oceans and infrastructure.
Learn more about how WSP is activating its engagement at COP27, hybrid events you can register to attend, and the distinct suite of capabilities that make WSP a leader in climate, resilience & sustainability: https://www.wsp.com/en-us/campaigns/cop27
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