The Walz-Flanagan Administration’s proposed budget presented for the 2023 legislative session includes numerous priorities that will help the MPCA advance its work to ensure ensuring that every Minnesotan has healthy air, sustainable lands, clean water, and a better climate.
Implement the Climate Action Framework
The administration is proposing historic investments across the enterprise of more than $700 million in the 2024-2025 biennium to address our most challenging sources of greenhouse gases and ensure Minnesota’s resilience.
There are several important climate items for the MPCA including nearly $174 million over the next two years to expand a grants and technical assistance program that helps communities adapt to a warmer and wetter Minnesota, and additional funding for the MPCA to evaluate the impacts, costs, and benefits of greenhouse gas emission reduction strategies.
Reduce and manage PFAS contamination
To assist industry and communities in reducing or eliminating the use or release of PFAS, the proposed budget includes $4.4 million over the next two years for PFAS grant program to help facilities reduce or eliminate the use or release of PFAS into the environment. Grantees would be able to use the funding to identify product or process changes and design treatment strategies. It is estimated that 1,200 businesses in Minnesota may be using PFAS.
Address inequities in pollution exposure
The MPCA is committed to addressing inequities in pollution exposure rooted in the understanding that limiting cumulative impacts to pollution is crucial to protecting the health of all Minnesotans. Proposed funding would allow MPCA to implement a new law and corresponding rulemaking to consider cumulative impacts in the agency’s permitting decisions.
Enhance coordination and communication for complex permitting projects
Governor Walz and Lt. Governor Flanagan have made significant investments to improve MPCA’s coordination, and communication with project proposers, other state agencies, local governments, key stakeholders, and communities during environmental review and permitting. The expectation is to provide enhanced coordination and communication with clearer timelines starting with the agency’s most complex permitting and regulatory actions.