New York state is set to receive more than $3.3 million in federal aid to boost clean air programs and monitoring, the state's two U.S. senators announced Monday.
The money is coming from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and draws on both federal pandemic relief funding as well as money approved this summer meant to curtail the effects of climate change.
Broadly, the money will go toward programs meant to identify sources of air pollution and collect air quality data with the goal of improving public health, especially in lower-income communities and communities of color.
“Thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act and American Rescue Plan, the Empire State is getting a gust of federal support to fight pollution and keep our air healthy and clean," said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. “From Buffalo to the South Bronx, this federal investment in environmental justice will ensure all communities get the support they need to monitor and fight for clean air, improve public health, and build a more sustainable future."
The funding includes programs in Albany, including nearly $1 million for efforts at the University at Albany for an quality measurement network which will be used to assess indoor and outdoor air quality using five community schools as sites as well as mobile lab measurements.
The research foundation at SUNY Amherst is also receiving $499,000 to deploy air quality sensors in low-income Black neighborhoods in Buffalo in order to create community-specific prediction models for the area.
And in Onondaga County, the Onondaga Lake Cleanup Corp is receiving $465,367 in federal aid to create an education and outreach campaign through a web-based dashbaord.
Additional programs are being funded in Queens, the Bronx and in Franklin County.
“Access to clean air is a right we must fight to protect,” Gillibrand said. “This investment will help ensure that communities from the South Bronx to the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe have the resources they need to study and combat air pollution. It will keep New Yorkers healthier and our cities and towns cleaner. I’m proud to be delivering this money to New York and I’ll keep fighting to bring more federal dollars to our state.”