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$800 million to go towards 'climate resilience' projects

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – When natural disasters strike the federal government wants to make sure infrastructure is strong enough to withstand them. That’s why the Transportation Department says it’s awarding more than $800 million in grants for projects meant to protect infrastructure from the worsening effects of climate change. 

The climate resilience funding program is the first of its kind. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says it’s urgently needed. 

“Sea levels are higher than they used to be. Flood plains are changing from where they used to be. Wildfires are more frequent than they used to be. Then why in the world would we keep putting the infrastructure back the way it used to be,” Buttigieg said. “This resilience funding can help make pieces of infrastructure we all count on more resistant to those threats.”

He says the goal is to target spots that are especially vulnerable to extreme weather. The money will go to 80 projects across the country to revamp roads, bridges, ports and other infrastructure. 

“This is about smarter, better designs. Our economy, our daily commute, sometimes even our lives depend on making sure that infrastructure is strong,” Buttigieg said. 

The funding for the grants comes from the Infrastructure Law passed in 2021. 

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) says the projects are an investment that pays off for everyone. 

“If you want to be good stewards of our taxpayer money, if we didn’t do that it would be irresponsible to the Nth degree,” Warner said. 

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) agrees. Specifically, she praised the $3 million going to her state of West Virginia to elevate a highway to prevent flood damage. 

“I look forward to seeing it happen. I think this is what it means to rebuild smart and in smart areas,” Capito said. 

Sec. Buttigieg says there’s a reason the support is bipartisan. 

“I think that reason is that there’s no Republican or Democratic roads and bridges. They’re just pieces of infrastructure we all count on every day,” Buttigieg said. 

You can see the full list of projects getting funding here. 

Source: Fox 8 News Channel

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