Assistance to Coal Communities (ACC)
Here in the United States, booming natural gas production, updated clean air standards, and both declining production costs and accelerating advances in clean energy technology are among the primary contributing factors transforming how electric power is generated, priced, and consumed.
These trends are producing beneficial outcomes for many Americans, such as cleaner air, healthier communities, and the creation of new jobs in emerging renewable energy industries. At the same time, these trends also directly impact workers and communities who have historically relied on the coal economy for good jobs and economic prosperity. To help these communities adapt to the changing energy landscape and reposition their economies for a prosperous future, the Economic Development Administration (EDA) administers the Assistance to Coal Communities Program, or ACC.
What is Assistance to Coal Communities?
Congress designates a portion of EDA’s annual Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) (PDF) funding to support communities and regions that have been negatively impacted by changes in the coal economy. “Coal economy” is a term that reflects the complete supply chain of coal-reliant industries. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Coal mining,
- Coal-fired power plants, and
- Related transportation, logistics, and supply chain manufacturing.
To support these projects, EDA prioritizes ACC implementation projects and activities that:
- Will produce multiple economic and workforce development outcomes, such as
- promoting regional economic growth and diversification,
- new job creation, and
- reemployment opportunities for displaced coal economy workers.
- Are specifically identified under local and regional economic development plans that have been collaboratively produced by diverse local and regional stakeholders.
EDA continues to regularly support coal-impacted communities with a variety of economic development strategies through its Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance Programs (PWEAA) Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO). Please note: There are no submission deadlines under this opportunity, and applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis until the publication of a new PWEAA NOFO.
American Rescue Plan Coal Communities Commitment
As part of its $3 billion American Rescue Plan appropriation, EDA made a Coal Communities Commitment (CCC) through which it allocated more than $300 million of these funds to support coal communities as they recover from the pandemic, develop resilient economies, and create well-paying, quality jobs. Additionally, EDA collaborates closely with the Interagency Working Group on Coal & Power Plant Communities & Economic Revitalization (IWG) to ensure that the $300 million Coal Communities Commitment is implemented equitably and effectively. The IWG’s clearinghouse of funding opportunities highlights additional resources across the federal government that can further the prosperity of coal communities.
Additional information on EDA’s Coal Communities Commitment can be found on the Fact Sheet (PDF).
Coal Community of Practice
In June 2022, EDA announced a $2.6 million grant to the National Association of Counties (NACo) to lead a coal-focused Community of Practice called the Building Resilient Economies in Coal Communities Initiative (BRECC). NACo published a blog, Building Resilient Economies in Coal Communities: New NACO Community of Practice, with more details on this exciting initiative. If you are interested in joining the BRECC National Network, please click here to sign up and subscribe for more information and updates.
- Subscribe to EDA’s New for Coal Communities newsletter or any other EDA communications.
- Click here for additional information about other EDA funding opportunities.
This page will be updated with additional information, resources, and related links as these become available.