Climate Resilience Challenge


The Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) supports efforts by local governments to engage in Climate Resilience projects through the Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Fund (EIAF) program. Current EIAF program guidelines are scored in how they incorporate resilience, renewables, and hazard risk reduction. The Climate Resilience Challenge will take this work to the next level with a $20M set aside for bold projects that move forward cutting edge climate work.

The Climate Resilience Challenge of up to $20M over the next three fiscal years will encourage and support local governments to promote and integrate climate resilience projects that capture multiple objectives across climate adaptation and climate mitigation solutions that holistically address the most high-risk vulnerabilities for the region while advancing inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA).

The Challenge supports a reduced local match and increased award opportunities. All applications in this Challenge will follow the regularly planned cycles of the EIAF Program.

Technical assistance support is available through DOLA Regional Managers and statewide resources including the Colorado Resiliency Office and Colorado Energy Office. Grants under this Challenge will include a focus on social equity including the unique needs of the diverse demographics across Colorado’s communities.

Eligible Projects

The Challenge seeks to fund future-oriented climate resilience projects that can serve as replicable or scalable models, offering bold solutions to community challenges. In order to be eligible for funding, projects must reduce risks to climate impacts. 1

The Climate Resilience Guidance & Resources provides background on the climate resilience plans and projects that qualify for the Challenge. The examples listed should not limit creative solutions that meet local/regional needs.

  • Planning - development and adoption of a Climate Resilience Plan or Climate Action Plan - 10% local match
    In order to apply for planning funding, the proposed plan must at a minimum address climate mitigation as well as climate-related risks, impacts, and vulnerabilities (including social vulnerabilities) and climate adaptation solutions.
  • Implementation - 25% local match, Application limit capped at $5M
    In order to apply for implementation funding, the applicant is required to have one of the above plan types adopted in the past five years. The proposed project must capture multiple objectives across climate adaptation and climate mitigation solutions that holistically address the most high-risk vulnerabilities for the region while advancing inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA).
    • Climate adaptation projects: projects that build resilience, mitigate hazards, and prepare communities for future climate-related shocks and stressors in high-risk areas that tie together disaster resilience, climate adaptation, and environmental justice.
      • Hazard mitigation projects: Projects that address high-risk hazards and build or rebuild in a way that reduces, or mitigates, future disaster losses in Colorado communities.
      • Nature-based solutions & green infrastructure projects: Nature-based solutions to climate change involve conserving, restoring, or better managing ecosystems to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, while also providing benefits to human well-being and ecosystem/habitats. Similarly, “green infrastructure” provides a network of nature or semi-natural areas and green space that deliver ecosystem services, climate adaptation capacity, human well-being, and economic co-benefits.
      • Resilience hub projects: Resiliency hubs are physical spaces that serve as community centers for education, services, and community capacity. During emergencies, resiliency hubs may be activated to distribute resources and coordinate response and recovery services during, before, and after disasters - wildfires, floods, heat-related events, and power outages.
    • Climate mitigation/greenhouse gas emission projects:
      • Climate-ready public infrastructure: Public infrastructure, affordable housing, and downtowns that include smart growth/location-efficient site selection, water conservation, and other climate-related benefits.
      • High performance public buildings: Projects that incorporate energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that reduce GHG emissions through high performance public buildings. Project elements could include electrification; energy efficiency upgrades; net zero projects; on-site renewables; water efficiency projects.
      • Other infrastructure projects that include community solar, community microgrids, or other renewable energy components.


  • Up to $20M is established as a set-aside within the EIAF Program to fund the Climate Resilience Challenge through the end of Fiscal Year 2026 (June 30, 2026) or until funding is finished.
  • Applications for Climate Resilience Challenge may be submitted as part of the regularly planned EIAF cycles. Applicants must contact their Regional Manager prior to submitting any application and must be “ready to go” in order to be accepted into an EIAF grant cycle.
  • Application opens June 30, 2023 on the EIAF website.

1 If the project is proposed in a hazard area (for example, wildland urban interface, severe drought location, etc.), the project must use best practices and employ other hazard avoidance and mitigation strategies (for example, fire resistant building materials, drought tolerant landscaping, etc.) on a project-by-project basis.


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