VP Kamala Harris visits University of Miami to announce $562M for climate resiliency

MIAMI – Vice President Kamala Harris arrived in South Florida Friday afternoon, where she addressed millions of dollars in federal funding earmarked for climate resiliency projects.

She’s delivered her remarks at the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine, Atmospheric, and Earth Science on Virginia Key.

Her visit came on the day President Biden signed an executive order creating the White House Office of Environmental Justice.

The order tells executive branch agencies to use data and scientific research to understand how pollution hurts people’s health, so that work can be done to limit any damage. Under the order, executive agencies would be required to inform nearby communities if toxic substances were released from a federal facility.

In Miami, the vice president announced $562 million to help protect communities against the impacts of climate change.

Watch remarks:

Broward County is expected to receive funds under the Weatherization Assistance Program.

“The existing Department of Energy program will provide $3.5 billion to improve home energy efficiency for low-income families, reducing energy costs, improving household comfort and safety, and cutting pollution,” a county spokesperson said. “The funding flows first to state and tribal governments, who in turn fund a network of local community action agencies, nonprofit organizations, and local governments that provide weatherization services.”

The spokesperson added: “The first tranche of funds was released in the first quarter of 2022. The county does not yet know if the state has received these funds. We will await guidelines and certainly intend to pursue them if eligible.”

In North Miami, some of the money is expected to go to restoring mangroves and dunes.

About the Authors:

Christina returned to Local 10 in 2019 as a reporter after covering Hurricane Dorian for the station. She is an Edward R. Murrow Award-winning journalist and previously earned an Emmy Award while at WPLG for her investigative consumer protection segment "Call Christina."