19 U.S. Diplomatic Posts Receive Grants for Their Sustainable Ideas
A State Department program awards up to $1 million to assist U.S. embassies and consulates for their innovative solutions to environmental problems.
Nineteen U.S. embassies and consulates were recently awarded grants to implement sustainable solutions for their operations and communities.
On June 28, the State Department announced the winners of its fourth annual Resilience Innovation Grant, part of the Greening Diplomacy Initiative (GDI) Awards. The program awards up to $1 million to assist U.S. embassies and consulates in implementing innovative plans to tackle environmental problems.
“Selected projects positively impact the communities the department operates in and provide tangible examples of sustainable and adaptive interventions,” said an announcement from the State Department. “Incorporating a variety of technologies and spanning every region, the 19 winning projects ranged in size from $3,050 to $187,000. Energy emerged as a theme, with several winning projects focusing on solar water heaters, LED retrofits, and building infrastructure to support electric vehicles at our diplomatic posts.”
The grantees included embassies or consulates in Lusaka, Mbabane, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Surabaya, Bern, Singapore, Bridgetown, Dar es Salaam, Riga, Manama, Valletta, Tunis, Singapore, Oslo, The Hague, Sao Paulo, Bishkek, and Lima. The Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations and Office of Management Strategy and Solutions will provide them with implementation guidance.
In their submissions, applicants were asked to explain what challenges they’d like to solve, the specifics of their proposed project and anticipated outcome. Then a panel comprised of representatives from the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations and Office of Management Strategy and Solution, reviewed the submissions.
“The grant has enabled investments in technologies that reduce exposure to volatile energy prices and unstable grids, reduce water consumption, support electric vehicle charging infrastructure, and enable responsible waste management practices,” Caroline D’Angelo, deputy chief sustainability officer at the State Department, told Government Executive. “Though it’s a small pot of funding, it has created incentives and opportunities for posts to lead by example in tackling local operational and environmental issues and supports the department’s efforts to lead by example on sustainability and climate.”