The U.S. Commerce Department and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced Friday $1 million in funding to improve the collection of Arctic climate data.
In a statement, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said the U.S. Arctic region — which consists of the state of Alaska — is warming faster than any region in the United States and demands immediate action.
She said the new funding — part of the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act, which included money for clean energy development — will provide “data and tools that can build climate resilience and strengthen our economy and national security.”
The $1 million in funding will be used to solicit grant ideas from institutions of higher education, other nonprofits or commercial organizations to help improve climate and data collection, with a focus on Alaskan communities.
In the same statement, NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad said, the call for grant proposals is designed to both gather data and help Alaskan rural and Indigenous communities.
“Providing communities with environmental information that allows them to make informed decisions in the face of a changing climate is the foundation of creating a more climate resilient nation,” he said.
The most recent NOAA National Climate Assessment indicates Alaska is warming at a rate that is two to three times faster than the lower 48 states, and the Arctic as a whole is warming nearly four times faster than the rest of the global average.