In 1998, former Mayor Willie L. Brown, Jr. secured $13 million in state funding to address local concerns regarding shutdown of PG&E’s Hunters Point Power Plant and sale of the Potrero Power Plant. The City has since dedicated this funding to community-based projects serving the Bayview Hunters Point and Potrero Hill neighborhoods—two areas that were most adversely affected by the in-City power plants—to help them become healthier, more sustainable communities.
During a period of 10 years, from 2001 through 2011, SF Environment’s Environmental Justice grant program provided funds to support a variety of projects. Some of these projects involved, among other things, installing solar power systems on low-income homes and nonprofit buildings; developing and maintaining community gardens and urban farms near low-income housing sites; promoting the use of cleaner, alternative biofuels to reduce diesel pollution; increasing local access to affordable, nutritious fresh produce; and designing and constructing an innovative “green” educational center, called the EcoCenter at Heron’s Head Park, in the Bayview community.
SF Environment grant funds have also supported green job training projects. We providing funding support to several projects that focused on increasing job opportunities to those facing multiple barriers to employment, while making our homes and neighborhoods healthier and more sustainable. As the City strives towards a zero-carbon and zero-waste economy, we are helping job training programs integrate resource conservation, energy efficiency, and green building principles into their training curricula.
Independent Evaluation of Environmental Justice Grant Program
In 2006, a consulting firm called TechLaw, Inc. examined the Environment Justice grants and issued a report, "Independent Evaluation of Environmental Justice Grant Program." This report describes the achievements made by the initial grants from 2001 to 2005.