WEEKLY UPDATES2019-12-18T20:59:43+00:00

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of March 23-27, 2020


NTAA welcomes Maranda Hamme, Environmental Manager for the Craig Tribal Association to the NTAA Executive Committee as the Alternate Alaska Representative! Maranda joins Ann Wyatt who is the Primary Alaska Representative on the NTAA EC and is the Environmental Planner for the Klawock Cooperative Association. Click here to learn about the NTAA Executive Committee.  


NTAA welcomes the newest member Tribes to the family of NTAA member Tribes: The Chickahominy Indian Tribe in Region 3 and The Muscogee (Creek) Nation in Region 6. With the addition of both these Tribes, NTAA’s membership now includes 151 member Tribes! Click here to learn more!


NTAA Releases a Policy Resource Kit on EPA’s Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SNPRM) for Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science

The NTAA has released this Fact Sheet, to help your Tribe in developing a response to EPA. Comments are due by April 17, 2020. NTAA is also holding an informational webinar for Tribes to better understand this proposal and ask questions on Tuesday, April 7, 2020 at 2pm ET. Register, view documents, and hear the audio for the informational webinar here. Stay tuned to the NTAA’s website for the complete PRK!


Health and Human Services Announces $80M to Support COVID-19 Response in Indian Country

The Department of Health and Human Services announced an $80 million spend plan for tribes, tribal organizations, and urban Indian organizations to support COVID-19 response efforts in Indian Country. Read the full release from HHS here.


NTAA and ITEP, in consultation with the 2020 NTFAQ Planning Committee, has determined that in the interest of public health and the well-being of our communities across the country, the 2020 National Tribal Forum on Air Quality will be cancelled. At this time, we are exploring options for rescheduling the event so that we can continue to deliver the high-quality experience you have come to expect from the NTFAQ. We are offering registration fee refunds for those who already submitted payment, and will be working closely with our project partners to communicate the cancellation, as well as plans for the future. If you have questions or comments, please contact andy.bessler@nau.edu.



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

Indian Country Today – ‘We have a deal’ on emergency spending


ABC News – Tribes take measures to slow spread of new coronavirus


CNBC – Air pollution falls as coronavirus slows travel, but scientists warn of longer-term threat to climate change progress


The Hill – Advocacy groups push back on ‘business as usual’ at EPA during coronavirus


U.S. EPA – Message from OITA Assistant Administrator, Chad McIntosh, to Tribal Leaders and Tribal Environmental Director’s regarding COVID-19


Los Angeles Times – Does air pollution make you more susceptible to coronavirus? California won’t like the answer


Atmospheric and Oceanic Science Letters – Ammonia has been wrongly missing in portraying air pollution impacts


AP – Rules to reduce New Mexico methane emissions begin drafted


Indian Country Today – Indian Country’s COVID-19 syllabus


Indian Country Today – Dancing for the people (virtually)


NY Times – How the Coronavirus Crisis May Hinder Efforts to Fight Wildfires


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

Grist – The key ingredient to surviving both coronavirus and climate change: our shared sense of humanity


ABC3340 – Amid pandemic, US coal industry seeks lower taxes, royalties


Bloomberg Green – Coal Is Now the World’s Most Expensive Fossil Fuel


E&E News – U.N. shifts from climate change to coronavirus


Cronkite News – Lower carbon-capture costs could entice businesses to address climate change


Yes! Magazine – Why Coronavirus Is Humanity’s Wake-Up Call


CarbonBrief – Restoring soils could remove up to ‘5.5bn tonnes’ of greenhouse gases every year


ENN – Hidden Source of Carbon Found at the Arctic Coast


Toxics/Mobile Sources

NY Times – Traffic and Pollution Plummet as U.S. Cities Shut Down for Coronavirus


Huffpost – Airline Union Leader to Push For New Climate Rules amid Fight over Bailout


NY Times – Big Rigs Begin to Trade Diesel for Electric Motors


NPR – Louisiana’s Chemical Corridor Is Expanding. So Are Efforts to Stop It


EPA – EPA Extends Deadline to Apply for Community-Scale Air Toxics Monitoring Grants


Clean Technica – The Electric Car Cost Tipping Point


Indoor Air Quality

EU Today – The predicted “air pollution pandemic” includes an indoor threat


Malay Mail – Confinement: How to minimize air pollution inside your home


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins


UPCOMING CALLS/EVENTS/NOTICES: Week of March 23-27, 2020


Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

DRAFT Guidance for Ozone and Fine Particulate Matter Permit Modeling: Comment by March 27, 2020
EPA is providing an opportunity for interested stakeholders to review and comment on DRAFT Guidance for Ozone and Fine Particulate Matter Permit Modeling. This guidance provides EPA’s recommendations for how a stationary source of air pollution seeking a Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) permit may demonstrate that it will not cause or contribute to a violation of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone (O3) and fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and PSD increments for PM2.5, as required under Section 165(a)(3) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) and 40 CFR sections 51.166(k) and 52.21(k). This draft guidance updates EPA’s Guidance for PM2.5 Permit Modeling to reflect the 2017 revisions to the Guideline on Air Quality Models and incorporates appropriate sections for O3.  EPA requests comments on the draft guidance by Friday, March 27, 2020. This allows at least 45 days for consideration, review, and comment. The draft guidance is available on EPA’s SCRAM website.


NEW! Call for Nominations: TAMS Steering Committee

The TAMS Center is announcing a call for nominations for one (1) position on the TAMS Steering Committee. The positon will serve from October 2020 to September 2023. Further information and the nomination forms are online and can be accessed at: TAMS Steering Committee Nomination Form. The deadline to submit a nomination is April 14, 2020. We sincerely appreciate your time to consider submitting a nomination. For further information, please contact either Farshid Farsi, TAMS-EPA Codirector (Farsi.Farshid@epa.gov or 702-784-8263), or Christopher Lee, TAMS-ITEP Codirector (Christoper.Lee@nau.edu or 702-784-8278).


Save the Date & Call for Papers: National Ambient Air Monitoring Conference

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, August 10-13, 2020. Abstracts due April 17, 2020.

EPA in conjunction with the Association of Air Pollution Control Agencies (AAPCA) and the National Association of Clean Air Agencies (NACAA) are pleased to announce the 2020 National Ambient Air Monitoring Conference. Interested in presenting a paper or a poster at the Conference? Great! We want to hear from you. We are interested in receiving proposals related to the following technical topics: PAMS, PM2.5 and Chemical Speciation, Near Road, Air Toxics, Tribal Monitoring, Field Operations, Sensors, Quality Assurance, Data Analysis & Data Visualization, Special Studies and Emerging Issues. This year we are also considering some time on the agenda for “Lightening Talks”.  These would be 5-10 minute maximum time slots for quick presentations on issues/topics related to ambient air monitoring and data analysis. In addition, if you’re planning to present a poster, please indicate if you would be interested in giving a 1-minute lightening talk about your poster. Abstracts are required for technical presentations, technical lightening talks, and posters. Please send your one-page abstract along with a bio to Laurie Trinca (trinca.laurie@epa.gov) no later than April 17, 2020. Registration is expected open in April 2020. Additional details will be available on EPA’s website in the coming months.


NEW! EPA Tools and Resources Webinar: Citizen Science at EPA

April 15, 2020, 3:00 to 4:00 PM ET

To join this webinar, please register here.

With the advent of new technologies for environmental monitoring and tools for sharing information, community volunteers are more engaged than ever before in collecting environmental data, and many environmental agencies are using these data. A major challenge is ensuring the quality of the data collected by citizen science organizations. One of the keys to breaking down this barrier is a Quality Assurance Project Plan. EPA’s Handbook for Citizen Science Quality Assurance and Documentation is for organizations that are starting or growing a citizen science project, and where transparency in the scientific methods for collecting the data are central to the outcome of the project. This webinar will provide an overview of citizen science at the Agency and showcase several EPA citizen science activities that involve partnerships with state, tribal and local governments on a diversity of issues, including 1) monitoring for cyanobacteria in waterbodies, 2) building and operating “real-time,” low-cost water quality sensors in Georgia; 3) demonstration of a new test method for community mapping of radon in Puerto Rico; 4) the Los Angeles Public Library air sensor loan program; and 5) using citizen science to analyze underwater video in the Great Lakes. For more information, visit EPA’s Citizen Science webpage. For registration questions, please email: tools_resources_webinar@epa.gov.


E-Enterprise National Meeting: Envisioning the Future of Environmental Protection

EE2020 is the latest in a long-running series of meetings sponsored by E-Enterprise for the Environment and the National Environmental Information Exchange Network. On May 12-14, 2020, EE2020 will bring together a broad community of attendees from state, tribal, and local environmental agencies, U.S. EPA, vendors, and other stakeholders with an interest in improving the productivity and responsiveness of the environmental protection enterprise. The meeting integrates content on information technology, program modernization, and process improvement. Click here to learn more about EE2020, the benefits of attending, and ways to get involved.


Save the Date: Tribal Lands and Environment Forum on August 17-20, 2020

This year’s Tribal Lands and Environment Forum: A National Conversation on Waste and Response Strategies, will take place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, August 17-20, 2020. Registration, session proposal forms, travel information, and field trip announcements will all be coming soon. Stay tuned! www.nau.edu/TLEF


Tribal Grants Education and Technical Assistance Webinar Series Second Wednesday of Every Month at 1pm ET

For more information, click here!


NTAA Upcoming Calls. The toll-free number is 1-800-309-2350. If you do not need to call toll free, or would like to help conserve NTAA funding, you can call 1-805-309-2350. Both numbers use code 928-523-0526#. Contact Andy.Bessler@nau.edu if you have any questions about any call! *Registration instructions* When you register for the GoToWebinar, please remember to include your Tribe, Region, or Organization in parenthesis after your last name. This allows you to see everyone on the call and prevents us from conducting a roll-call, ultimately saving everyone’s time.


STAR Planning Call: The NTAA Status of Tribal Air Report (STAR) helps tell the story of Tribal Air Programs, why additional funding for Tribes is critical to advance air quality, and is a great resource for Tribes. Wednesday, March 25, 2 pm ET
EPA Policy Call: Call in to hear updates from EPA on policies, actions, and tools relevant to Indian Country and Air Quality. Thursday, March 26, 2pm ET
Mobile Sources Work Group: This monthly work group addresses all mobile source pollution issues. Thursday, April 2, 2pm ET


Indoor Air Quality Work Group: Join this work group every other month to help support IAQ work throughout Indian Country. Thursday, April 16, 2pm ET
Wood Smoke Work Group: Join this work group every other month to address wood smoke issues in Indian Country. Thursday, May 21, 2pm ET


The Institute for Tribal Environmental Professional’s (ITEP’sTribes and Climate Change Calendar includes conferences, trainings, webinars and other events related to tribes and climate change.

Click here for ITEP’s other trainings and events.

Click here for ITEP’s new Tribal Environmental Management and Planning Online Courses. New courses have been added, so check it out!


 ITEP’s FY20 AIAQTP Course Schedule 


Course Title Dates Location Course Level
Meteorological Monitoring April 14-16 TAMS Center, Las Vegas, NV 3
National Tribal Forum on Air Quality (NTFAQ) May 27-29 Tulsa, OK n/a
Air Pollution Technology Postponed: June 2020 Flagstaff, AZ 2
Air Pollution Modeling Fall 2020 TAMS Center, Las Vegas, NV 3
Air Quality Outreach TBD TBD 1
Air Quality Planning for Wildland Smoke Anytime Series of 6 recorded webinars n/a
Indoor Air Quality – Independent Study Anytime Independent Study 1
Building Performance: Improving IAQ in Cold Climates Open Online 1
Building Performance: Improving IAQ in Warm Climates In development Online 1
Residential Building Science Review Open Online 1
Radon Fundamentals Open Online 1
Quality Assurance Fundamentals (QA 101) Open Online 1
Quality Assurance Project Plan (QAPP) (QA 201-209) Open Online 2
Emissions Inventory Fundamentals Open Online 2
Emissions Inventory Advanced Open Online 3
Note: This schedule is subject to change.  For up-to-date information, course descriptions, and applications please visit http://www7.nau.edu/itep/main/Training/training_air/


Climate Change / Energy

March 25, 11 AM (MT) – Energy Efficiency Projects from Concept to Completion

Once your Tribe has identified energy efficiency as a goal and considered the opportunities, the next state consists of defining and executing the project. This webinar will focus on how to move a project from concept to completion.



March 25, Noon (ET) – Ask the Expert

Every Wednesday ENERGY STAR holds a Portfolio Manager “Ask the Expert” session. It’s a live webinar that gives all users an opportunity to ask their questions directly to EPA experts in an open forum. Want to talk to a “real” person? Have a question about how Portfolio Manager calculates your score? Want to learn more about entering Green Power? Join ENERGY STAR, and they’ll answer all your questions about ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager in this public forum.



March 31, 1 PM (ET) — Resilient Power in Puerto Rico – Innovative Applications of Solar+Storage to Serve Vulnerable Populations  

Since Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico in 2017, demand for resilient power technologies — solar PV paired with battery storage (solar+storage) — has so far resulted in over 10,000 residential and 300 critical facility systems across the island. Despite these gains, persistent energy infrastructure issues still plague the island. After the recent earthquakes, entire regions had to contend with extended blackouts. Rural communities face additional hurdles. This Clean Energy Group webinar will explore innovative solar+storage applications in vulnerable communities. Panelists will also discuss barriers to resilient power development and local workforce training initiatives.



Call for Proposals now open: National Tribal & Indigenous Climate Conference August 31-September 3, 2020, St. Paul, Minnesota

Proposals due: April 3, 2020

The Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP) is honored to host the United States’ First Biennial National Tribal and Indigenous Climate Conference (NTICC) along with support from the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Tribal Resilience Program. The NTICC is open to all US tribal nations and Indigenous Peoples from throughout the world, with an emphasis on including our Elders and

Youth. The NTICC will convene experts on climate change and will include a balance of Traditional Indigenous Knowledges and Western Science. We invite people to submit proposals discussing climate-related impacts, assessments, tools, adaptation planning, mitigation and actions in one or more of the following tracks:


  • Indigenous Knowledges
  • Air, Health & Well-Being
  • Land
  • Water
  • Relocation
  • Infrastructure
  • Energy Systems
  • Food Sovereignty
  • Ecosystems and Biodiversity




South Central Climate Adaptation Science Center: Earth to Sky Workshop

Earth to Sky is a partnership between NASA, NPS, and USFWS that enables and encourages informal educators to access and use relevant NASA science, data, and educational and outreach products in their work. The partnership’s focus is on climate change science and communication. Join us for three days of training with native informal educators from across the South Central region who recognize the importance of teaching climate change. The workshop will take place July 15-17 in Sulphur, OK. Learn more here.


NEW! Save the Date: Southwest Tribal Climate Resilience Camp

Date: July 26-31, 2020

Location: Navajo Technical University – Crownpoint, NM

The Tribal Climate Resilience Camp will support teams of Tribal Leaders, climate change coordinators, planners, and program managers to build skills, gather information, and develop Tribal policies and plans needed for Tribal Nations to address climate change impacts. Information about travel, lodging, and registration will be available soon. You may contact Althea Walker, Tribal Climate                                                   Science Liaison, at AWalker@aihec.org or (480) 258-3963 with questions.


We are currently recruiting 10 Southwest Tribes to participate in the 2020 Camp. Each Tribe should identify three delegates per Tribe. The delegates must participate for the entire week curriculum. Delegates may include climate change staff, tribal policy leaders, Tribal Council, natural resource and environmental managers and staff, administrators, department staff from health, public works, education, housing, and other relevant departments that should engage in climate change planning. FOR APPLICATIONS Visit this link.


ITEP’s Climate Change Adaptation Training Courses registration is online! Learn more about the courses and register here.


Toxics/Mobile Sources

Draft EPA Port-Related Emission Inventory Methodologies Document Available

The public draft of the “Methodologies for Estimating Port-Related and Goods Movement Mobile Source Emission Inventories” is now available. This document describes the latest, state-of-the-science methodologies for preparing a port-related emissions inventory for six mobile source sectors: ocean-going vessels, harbor craft, recreational marine, cargo handling equipment, onroad vehicles, and rail. This draft document reflects new data sources and model availability, and integrates the lessons learned from practical experience with EPA-Port Everglades Partnership and National Port Strategy Assessment. This document supersedes EPA’s 2009 “Current Methodologies in Preparing Mobile Source Port-Related Emission Inventories.” Interested stakeholders can send any feedback on this draft to talkaboutports@epa.gov by March 31, 2020. In addition, EPA encourages stakeholders to use this document when developing inventories.  EPA will consider any feedback received on the public draft in a future revision to this document. For more information, please visit this link.


Postponed! Green Transportation Summit & Expo and the West Coast Collaborative Partners Meeting has been postponed until August 24-26, 2020

After careful consideration of the growing public health concerns associated with the coronavirus (COVID-19), the Green Transportation Summit & Expo and the US EPA West Coast Collaborative is postponing our GTSE | WCCPM event until

August 24 – 26, 2020, at the Greater Tacoma Convention Center in Tacoma, WA.

The Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP) and the Green Transportation Summit & Expo (GTSE) have partnered to provide 25 complimentary full-conference passes to the Green Transportation Summit & Expo. The GTSE is the Pacific Northwest’s premier clean fleet and transportation event, focusing on fleets, fuels, technologies, policy & practice, with a regional focus and a national scope. We will provide you the opportunity to see, touch, drive, and learn about new transportation technologies firsthand, such as electric, hydrogen, natural gas and propane-powered heavy-duty vehicles, off-road utility vehicles, generators, and others. Workshops on DERA, VW funding, other federal funding opportunities, and alternative fuels will be presented. Please join us at the Greater Tacoma Convention Center for the 10th annual GTSE to learn about clean transportation, how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, pollutants, and costs in your fleet operations. To learn more about the conference, check out our website. To receive the code for the complimentary passes, please contact ITEP’s Dara Marks Marino at Dara.Marks-Marino@nau.edu.


Heavy Duty Engine Design for a Transitioning Market

Thursday, April 2, 2020, at 12:00pm EDT

An uncertain regulatory climate. The potential for automated vehicle operation. All these trends are affecting the way engine developers are approaching near-term engine design and development cycles. What are the most significant – and potentially most disruptive – factors that will influence engine developers in the next three to five years? This 60-minute Technical Webinar from the editors of SAE International examines emergent engine design and technology trends that are likely to advance as smart choices in a transitioning environment of on- and off-road heavy-duty engines. An audience Q&A will follow the technical presentation. Register here!


EPA MOVES Training

EPA has presented various webinars and training courses to assist users with Motor Vehicle Emission Simulator (MOVES) software and inputs, and makes presentation slides available here for future reference. Subscribe to the MOVES Listserv to receive notification of upcoming webinars and courses. We have an upcoming hands-on two day MOVES training session scheduled for May 5-6 in Research Triangle Park, NC. This is part of EPA’s Air Emissions Inventory Training conference, which is free and intended for state, local, and tribal air agency members and their contractors who develop inventories and/or prepare State Implementation Plans.  For more information, see this webpage. We also make all of our training materials available for self-study on our website.


Indoor Air Quality

NEW! Welcome Secody Hubbard as the IED’s new Tribal Coordinator!

Secody, a member of the Navajo Nation from Ganado, Arizona, has been with EPA for 14 years. He has a lot of experience in the agency, having worked at Region 7 in the Office of Policy and Management; Region 6 as the Texas Tribal Program Coordinator; EPA Headquarters as the National American Indian/Alaska Native Program Manager in the Office of Civil Rights. Most recently, Secody previously worked in Region 9’s Superfund Division on the implementation of the US EPA 5-Year Plan on Addressing Uranium Contamination on the Navajo Nation. Secody’s background includes exceptional knowledge of federal Indian policy, Tribal governments, the US Federal System and intergovernmental relations.  Before joining EPA, he worked with Tribal Governments on the Arizona Colorado Plateau Ecosystem Management Project as a Research Associate for Northern Arizona University, and served as a Special Diabetes Project Consultant to the Navajo Area US Indian Health Service on the Navajo Nation. Secody earned his BS in Health Administration, Master of Public Administration, and a PhD in Public Policy from Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona. For now, Secody will be teleworking like most of the rest of the agency. If you would like to reach out, you can contact him at Hubbard.secody@epa.gov.


NEW! New Radon Testing and Mitigation Standards Webinars  April 14th and 16th

Join members from the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (AARST), Conference of Radon Control Program Directors (CRCPD), and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for two free webinars on the new radon testing and mitigation standards. The April 14th webinar is primarily designed for CRCPD members and the April 16th webinar is geared towards AARST members; however anyone interested in learning more about the new testing and mitigation standards is welcome to join either webinar. In 2019, EPA issued guidance on the use of voluntary consensus standards (VCS) for state indoor radon grant recipients. The guidance recommends that all State Indoor Radon Grant recipients reference the most current VCS when implementing their radon programs. These standards undergo a rigorous development and a periodic review process to include new science, new technology, and marketplace evolution. EPA is encouraging the use of current codes and standards to help ensure public health protection. Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that can cause lung cancer. EPA estimates that radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and is responsible for about 21,000 lung cancer deaths every year. Learn more about radon and how to address it.

  • Radon Testing and Mitigation Standards for CRCPD Members; April 14, 2020. 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. EST
  • Radon Testing and Mitigation Standards for AARST Members and NRPP-Certified Professionals; April 16, 2020. 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. EST; Register.


Be sure to subscribe to CodeTalk, HUD’s Office of Native American Programs newsletter, for webinars and opportunities!




Now Hiring!

Check back here next week for current job openings!


Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

EPA OMS National Environmental Information Exchange Network Grant Program – $8 million 

Application extended to: April 10, 2020

An amended version of the FY2020 Exchange Network Solicitation Notice is available on our website.

Eligible Entities: territories, tribes, and inter-tribal consortia, states, U.S. territories, federally recognized tribes

The EPA Exchange Network Grant Program is soliciting project applications using the Environmental Information Exchange Network (EN) to:

  • Facilitate sharing of environmental data, especially through shared and reusable services.
  • Streamline data collection and exchanges to improve its timeliness for decision making.
  • Increase the quality and access to environmental data through discovery, publishing, outbound and analytical services so it is more useful to environmental managers.
  • Develop foundational EN shared services to reduce burden and avoid costs for co-regulators and the regulated community.
  • Expand and improve participation in the EN by strengthening the requisite information management and technology capabilities for interested parties to fully participate in the EN.

For more information, visit the funding opportunity description.


NOAA Environmental Literacy Grants: Supporting the education of K-12 students and the public for community resilience – $3 million

Applications Due: March 26, 2020 for Priority 1 full applications

Eligible Entities: K-12 public and independent schools and school systems, state and local government agencies, Indian tribal governments

The goal of this funding opportunity is to build environmental literacy of K-12 students and the public so they are knowledgeable of the ways in which their community can become more resilient to extreme weather and/or other environmental hazards, and become involved in achieving that resilience. For more information, visit the funding opportunity description.


DOI BLM Alaska Fuels Management and Community Fire Assistance Program Activities – $200 thousand

Applications Due: March 30, 2020

Eligible Entities: special district governments, city or township governments, state governments, county governments, Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized)

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has an opportunity to work with partner organizations to assist with fuels management and community fire assistance program activities to reduce the risk and impact of catastrophic wildfires to local communities through coordination, reducing the amount of hazardous fuels, and furthering the education of landowners about wildfire prevention and mitigation. For more information, visit the funding opportunity description.


NEW! EPA OAR Community-Scale Air Toxics Ambient Monitoring – $5 million

Applications Due: May 1, 2020

Eligible Entities: A state, interstate, local, or tribal air pollution control agency

EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation (OAR) is soliciting applications from eligible entities for projects designed to assist state, local, and tribal air agencies in identifying and characterizing air toxics, also known as hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), through work that falls into one of four categories. Those categories are:

  1. characterizing the impacts of air toxics in a community (community-scale monitoring);
  2. assessing impacts of toxics emissions from specific sources (near-source monitoring);
  3. evaluating new and emerging testing methods for air toxics; and,
  4. analyzing existing air toxics data and developing or enhancing analytical, modeling, and/or implementation tools.

Air toxins of particular interest to EPA in this solicitation include ethylene oxide, chloroprene, benzene, 1,3-butadiene, and metals such as hexavalent chromium, nickel, and arsenic. For more information, visit the funding opportunity description.


DOI BOR Native American Affairs: Technical Assistance to Tribes for FY20 and FY21 – $1 million

Applications Due: October 28, 2020 for FY21

Eligible Entities: federally recognized tribes or tribal organizations of the 17 Western States identified in the Reclamation Act of June 17, 1902

The objective of this opportunity is to invite federally recognized Indian tribes and tribal organizations to submit proposals for financial assistance for projects and activities that develop, manage, and protect tribal water and related resources. Through this opportunity, Reclamation provides funding for projects that increase water reliability consistent with sections 3 and 4 of the October 19, 2018, Presidential Memorandum on Promoting the Reliable Supply and Delivery of Water in the West. For more information, visit the funding opportunity description.


To view and/or receive ITEP’s American Indian Air Quality Training Program newsletter, Native Voices, click here!


Climate Change/Energy

DOE GFO Solar Energy Technologies Office Fiscal Year 2020 Funding Program Department of Energy – $125.5 million

Applications Due: March 30, 2020

Eligible Entities: unrestricted

This funding opportunity is being issued by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO). SETO supports solar energy research and development (R&D) in three technology areas—photovoltaics (PV), concentrating solar-thermal power (CSP), and systems integration—with the goal of improving the affordability, reliability, and performance of solar technologies on the grid. This section describes the overall goals of the Solar Energy Technologies Office Fiscal Year 2020 (SETO 2020) funding program and the types of projects being solicited for funding support through this FOA.

The SETO 2020 funding program seeks to advance R&D of solar technologies that reduce the cost of solar, increase the competitiveness of American manufacturing and businesses, and improve the reliability of the grid. These projects will advance R&D in PV, CSP, and energy management technologies, while also working to improve cyber security, expand solar to new applications like agricultural solar, integrate solar and storage, and utilize artificial intelligence to address research challenges. For more information, visit the funding opportunity description.


NEW! USDA RUS Assistance to High Energy Cost Communities – $10 million

Applications Due: April 27, 2020

Eligible Entities: Native American tribal organizations (other than federally recognized tribal governments), City or township governments, Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized), Special district governments, County governments, State governments 

The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), announces the availability of up to $10 million in competitive grants to assist communities with extremely high energy costs. The grant funds may be used to acquire, construct, or improve energy generation, transmission, or distribution facilities serving communities where the average annual residential expenditure for home energy exceeds 275% of the national average. Eligible projects also include on-grid and off-grid renewable energy projects and the implementation of energy efficiency and energy conservation projects for eligible communities. Projects cannot be for the primary benefit of a single household or business. Grant funds may not be used for the preparation of the grant application, operating costs, or for the purchase of any equipment, structures, or real estate not directly associated with the provision of community energy services. For more information, visit the funding opportunity description.


NEW! CC 202 Online Course: Tribal Hazard Mitigation Planning, application deadline extended to May 1

October 2020-September 2021

Course Goal: To support Tribe’s hazard mitigation planning through peer-to-peer learning and knowledge exchanges in a facilitated cohort focused on the process of developing or updating a Tribal Hazard Mitigation Plan, which looks “at natural hazards that may affect tribal governments and suggests actions to reduce losses from those hazards” (FEMA Tribal Mitigation Planning Resources). The course will be based around FEMA’s hazard mitigation plan requirements and will connect participants to resources, tools, information, and additional specialized expertise on a variety of topics including, but not limited to, various natural hazards, climate change in the context of natural hazards, FEMA’s four-phases of emergency management (mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery), cultural considerations, Tribal/Indigenous Knowledges, community outreach and engagement, hazard identification and risk assessment, asset inventorying, and developing and implementing an action plan. Follow this link to find out more information and to register. Contact Karen.Cozzetto@nau.edu with questions.


Join NCAI’s Climate Action email listserv here!


Sign up for the Alliance for Green Heat’s newsletter!


To view and/or receive ITEP’s Climate Change newsletter, click here!


Toxics/Mobile Sources

EPA Announces Community-Scale Air Toxics Monitoring Grant Competition

Deadline Extended to: May 1, 2020

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is accepting applications for funding for air toxics monitoring projects under the Community-Scale Air Toxics Ambient Monitoring grants competition. As part of the Agency’s mission to protect human and environmental health, EPA periodically awards these grants to help state, local and tribal air agencies conduct air quality monitoring projects to address localized air toxics issues. EPA anticipates awarding up to $5 million from this competition to fund projects that fall into four categories:

  • Characterizing the impacts of air toxics in a community (community-scale monitoring);
  • Assessing the impacts of air toxics emissions from specific sources (near-source monitoring);
  • Evaluating new and emerging testing methods for air toxics; and
  • Analyzing existing air toxics data and developing or enhancing analytical, modeling, and/or implementation tools.

Air toxics, also known as hazardous air pollutants, are linked to cancer or other serious health effects. Under the Clean Air Act, EPA regulates 187 listed air toxic pollutants. While grant applications may address any air toxic pollutant, air toxics of particular interest to EPA in this competition include ethylene oxide, chloroprene, benzene, 1,3-butadiene, and metals such as hexavalent chromium, nickel and arsenic.

To receive the grants, applicants must be air pollution control agencies as defined by Section 302(b) of the Clean Air Act that also are eligible to receive grants under Section 105 of the Clean Air Act. Funding for the grants comes from State and Tribal Assistance (STAG) funding. Congress appropriates STAG funds for state, local and tribal air agencies to use in implementing and maintaining environmental programs.

Agencies applying for the air toxics monitoring grants may partner with or provide “subgrants” to other organizations for their monitoring projects. The Agency expects to award grants for 10 to 20 projects, depending on funding availability and the quality of applications received. The amount for each grant may vary; however, no grant may be for more than $750,000. Click here for additional information, and to download the Request for Application.  

Indoor Air Quality

Be sure to sign up for EPA’s Healthy Indoor Air newsletter.


The Tribal Healthy Homes Network (THHN) has a webpage dedicated to Funding Opportunities! Additionally, THHN has developed a Funding Guide for American Indian and Alaska Native Communities.


Most Recent Listing: EPA Rules from the Federal Register can be found here.

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of March 16-20, 2020


National Tribal Forum on Air Quality Has Been Cancelled

On Friday, March 13, 2020, the National Tribal Air Association (NTAA), along with others from EPA and the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals, held an emergency call and made the decision to cancel the 2020 National Tribal Forum on Air Quality, originally scheduled for May 25-28, 2020. This decision was made in light of the many Tribes across the country who have instituted travel bans for staff, and based on the recent guidance offered by the U.S. Center for Disease Control and the World Health Organization, to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The NTAA will continue to host national conference calls and webinars in service to its mission to support Tribal Air Quality Programs across the country. Conference cancellations are widespread, as this article in E&E News highlights, and mentions the cancellation of NTFAQ.


Resources for Protection from COVID-19

The EPA has published an expanded list of disinfectant products that are qualified for use against COVID-19. The American Lung Association has published an update titled Protecting Yourself during the Spread of the Coronavirus or COVID-19.


EPA’s Transparency in Science Supplemental Proposal published in the Federal Register today. NTAA will be publishing a Policy Resource Kit for Tribes to use to respond to the proposal that can be found here.



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

E&E News – Science Advisory Board to review methane, water rules


Ensia – Opinion: Scientists Must Learn How to Interact with Indigenous People


E&E News – EPA won’t tighten asphalt emission standards


EPA – EPA to Review Lead Ambient Air Standards


The Hill – Adviser behind controversial EPA policies returns as agency chief of staff


High Country News – ‘This system cannot be sustained’


Science Daily – Air pollution is one of the world’s most dangerous health risks


NPR – China’s Efforts to Control Coronavirus Lead to Less Air Pollution


Washington Post – The coronavirus is deadly enough. But some experts wonder if bad air makes it worse.


AZ Central – Tribal and local activist air concerns about Resolution copper mine at Oak Flat for congressional subcommittee


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

Grist – Why don’t we treat climate change like an infectious disease?


NY Times – Social Distancing? You Might Be Fighting Climate Change, Too


Fortune – 5 charts projecting the cost of climate change by 2100


NPR – A Checkup on California’s Efforts to Combat Climate Change


NPR – Is Failure To Prepare For Climate Change A Crime?


Ensia – Does This Tiny Island Off the Coast of Maine Hold the Answer to the Future of Electricity?


E&E News – COVID-19 mimics climate catastrophe at ‘warp speed’


E&E News – Coronavirus and the U.S. grid: What to know


Cronkite News – Climate change already is diminishing the Colorado River, U.S. researchers find


Toxics/Mobile Sources

Green Car Congress – Emissions analytics finds pollution from tire wear can be 1,000x worse than exhaust emissions


Inside EV’s – Emissions-Free Future: A Look at the Appeal & Hesitation around EVs


Indoor Air Quality

E&E News – EPA denies request for leniency for wood stove standards


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Our mission is to advance air quality management policies and programs, consistent with the needs, interests, and unique legal status of American Indian Tribes and Alaska Natives.