Extreme heat is affecting the Central and Eastern US right now (June 2022). Extreme heat is likely to be one of the greatest challenges brought on by climate change - and one of the highest causes of illness and death. These effects are exacerbated by the frailty of our electrical grid, and are felt most strongly among low-income communities of color.
The EPA is currently offering a community challenge grant program to promote communication and public engagement around the impacts of extreme heat. Ten awards will share $120,000. An informational webinar will take place June 22nd at 2:00 ET.
From EPA's Website:
EPA and co-sponsors have launched the Let's Talk About Heat Challenge, a national competition to identify innovative and effective communication strategies that inform people of the risks of extreme heat and offer ways to keep safe during the hottest days. The challenge was developed in support of the National Climate Task Force's Extreme Heat Interagency Working Group, which is being led by EPA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) with support from the White House.
Winning solutions will include identification of and engagement with people known to be most susceptible to extreme heat risks, including but not limited to underserved and overburdened communities. Winners will share suitable messages, strategies used to reach target audiences with those messages, and proposed measures of effectiveness. Communication methods might include social media, billboards, graphics, public service announcements and other forms of communication. The challenge sponsors hope to identify ways to monitor the effectiveness of these heat risk campaigns and messages and share the best practices with communities across the nation.
- Identification of heat risk, target audience, and need for message and communication strategy.
- Engagement with representatives of target audience to form effective communications about extreme heat risks.
- Effectiveness of message and communication strategy for reaching target audience, including supportive partnerships.
- Transferability of messages to other communities.*
*Note that EPA and co-sponsors will work to share winning messages to other communities. Submitters are not required to transfer messages to a wider audience.
- Use of reliable data to identify target audience and form risk communications.
- Creativity and innovation.
- Messages and strategies that reach people who are underserved and overburdened.
- Metrics for evaluating effectiveness and impact of messages and communication strategy.