ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Over $5 million has been awarded to projects in the Capital Region. The projects will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to the ongoing effects of climate change.

The money was awarded through the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Climate Smart Communities Grant program. The program was part of the $196 million in Regional Economic Development Council awards announced by Governor Kathy Hochul in December.

“Municipalities that become Climate Smart Communities serve as models for others across the state by taking local action to reduce pollution and protect residents from severe weather and other consequences of our changing climate,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “Governor Hochul recognizes the severity of the challenges before us and these Climate Smart grants demonstrate New York State’s ongoing commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and helping all cities, towns, and villages, especially environmental justice communities, become stronger and more resilient.” 

The grant program supports municipalities looking to become Climate Smart Communities. It also helps to implement projects that advance the state’s goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, mitigating flood risk and preparing for extreme weather. The DEC has awarded more than $50 million to municipalities in support of these projects.

Capital Region grant recipients

  • Albany was awarded $2 million for the Brevator Complete Street Project. The project will add new pedestrian and bicycle facilities, reduce traffic speeds and add a new Bus Rapid Transit service that will serve nearby educational and job centers. The City of Albany and CDTA will decrease vehicle trips, greenhouse gas emissions, and make walking, bicycling, and transit safer.
  • Albany County was awarded $15,000 for a greenhouse gas inventories update: The county will update the government operations and community greenhouse gas inventories to inform policymaking, climate change mitigation and capital investments.
  • Hunter was awarded $1,970,000 for its firehouse relocation. The village will relocate the village fire station 0.15 miles away from of the current site outside of the regulatory floodway and the hazard areas of the Schoharie Creek. The existing fire station will be demolished and replaced with a municipal park with streamside access.
  • Glenville was awarded $610,380 for the Van Buren Road Trail. The town will install an eight-foot-wide asphalt bicycle and pedestrian path, painted crosswalks, and pedestrian crossing signage along the north side of Van Buren Road in Glenville connecting the Glenville Town Center, the Anderson Dog Park, and other existing greenway trails.
  • Cohoes was awarded $460,000 for streetscape improvements. The project will improve White Street, a mixed-use business district in the center of downtown. It includes the reconstruction of approximately 600 feet of sidewalk, development of a pocket park with flexible gathering space for a wide range of activities, a bike hub and repair station, an urban composting and recycling station, a bus stop, and an environmental justice mural.
  • Warren County was awarded $40,000 for an organics management plan. The county will develop a plan to assess strategies for reducing food waste, as well as the diversion of food waste from the landfill and waste incinerator to reduce the release of methane into the atmosphere.
  • Niskayuna was awarded $25,000 for a greenhouse gas inventories and government operations climate action plan. The town will conduct inventories of greenhouse gas emissions and develop a climate action plan focused on reducing emissions from its government operations.

The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act requires New York reduce greenhouse gas emissions 85 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. More information about the grant program is available on the DEC website.