Attention Small Delaware Towns: DNREC Wants to Give You $80k

Laurel along Broad Creek Waterfront

A new grant program is offering up to $80,000 to towns across Delaware to step up their economic, environmental and public health planning.

DNREC’s Division of Energy & Climate is calling for local governments and their academic and non-profit partners to apply for the new Sustainable Communities Planning Grants with the goal of strengthening and making local communities more sustainable across the First State. Grants of up to $80,000 are available to towns with populations of 5,000 residents or more, and grants of up to $40,000 are available to municipalities with populations of fewer than 5,000 residents.

Grant funds can be used to develop:

  • Community sustainability plans
  • Climate change vulnerability assessments and action plans
  • Greenhouse gas inventories and mitigation plans
  • Natural areas inventories and conservation plans

“Delaware communities have already shown initiative in making their hometowns more sustainable – expanding bike networks, harnessing energy from renewable resources and reducing flood risks,” said Sustainability Planner Bahareh van Boekhold, Division of Energy & Climate. “Sustainable Communities Planning Grants will help build healthy, greener communities that attract new businesses, create new jobs, protect citizens and safeguard communities’ natural and cultural heritage.”

DNREC said that government partners are not required to be Delaware-based, as long as the proposed project will be developed for and in tandem with a Delaware community. Additionally, multiple jurisdictions may partner on joint projects.

The Division of Energy & Climate will host a webinar Tuesday, March 14 to review the Sustainable Communities Planning Grant Program and take questions from potential applicants. For webinar time and access information, complete grant program guidelines, resources and a downloadable application, visit the sustainable planning webpage at

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