RALEIGH, N.C. — The N.C. Office of Recovery Resiliency (NCORR) Regional Resilience Portfolio Program is pleased to announce the recipients of more than $600,000 in Duke Energy Resilience Accelerator Grant Program funding to support the implementation of 10 regional resilience projects. Funding for the selected projects will support building future resilience in eastern North Carolina communities. 

NCORR partnered with the Duke Energy Foundation to provide funding for projects prioritized in resilience portfolios for each of the nine regions served by the Regional Resilience Portfolio Program. The portfolios were created in partnership with nine regional councils of governments from areas hit hard by Hurricane Florence, with a primary goal of helping those communities plan for climate change impacts and the areas’ specific needs. The accelerator grant funding will allow each region to kick-start all or part of a priority project.

“The goal of the program was to help local leaders work with one another to identify priorities, challenges and then strategies for climate hazard resilience,” said the state’s Chief Resilience Officer Dr. Amanda Martin. “The accelerator grant seed money will move these projects to the next step of implementation,” she added. 

NCORR worked with nine councils of governments to create regional vulnerability assessments and resilience portfolios.  Each region’s stakeholder partnership voted to select the winning submission for that region. More details about each region’s winning project submission(s) can be found on the NCORR website

“Resiliency to climate hazards begins at the local level,” said Kendal Bowman, Duke Energy’s North Carolina president. “North Carolina communities have been hit hard in recent years by natural disasters and storms. These grants will help communities thrive amid changing climate conditions.”

Duke Energy Foundation awarded funding to support the following regional projects:

  • Albemarle – Develop a tool kit of customizable stormwater, water quality and flooding outreach for 10 member counties.
  • Cape Fear – Expand work of established community organization serving historically underserved communities with disaster mitigation and recovery assistance.
  • Eastern Carolina – Reuse of city-owned property acquired through FEMA’s Hazard Mitigation Grant Program as an outdoor classroom for education and leadership training.
  • Kerr-Tar – Establish commercial and industrial building inventory, including analysis of climate hazard impacts and risk reduction improvements.
  • Lumber River – Develop plan for wetland restoration project on Native American cultural center property that routinely floods.
  • Mid-Carolina – Install stream gauges and sensors at six locations to help improve flood warning and forecasting in routinely flooded areas.
  • Mid-East – Two projects funded: plan and design wetland and floodplain restoration to reduce flooding along Parker Creek and expand Latino-focused information-sharing partnerships to ensure equitable access to hazard preparedness and response information.
  • Triangle J – Plan and implement a Haw River warning system and evaluate backup power needs for emergency shelter facilities.
  • Upper Coastal Plain – Create flood resiliency by developing a benefit-cost analysis and hydrologic and hydraulic study of routinely flooded access points that include access to an emergency communications tower and residential neighborhood.

The Regional Resilience Portfolio Program is a component of the larger Regions Innovating for Strong Economies & Environment (RISE) Program. RISE is a partnership between the N.C. Office of Recovery and Resiliency (NCORR) and N.C. Rural Center, in collaboration with the N.C. Councils of Governments.

RISE is funded by a $1.1 million U.S. Economic Development Administration grant, in addition to federal mitigation funds, and support from both NCORR and N.C. Rural Center. RISE is managed by NCORR, a division of the N.C. Department of Public Safety. To learn more about the program or what’s happening in each council of government region, visit the RISE website.