A grant for local action on climate change in
Nova Scotia

The Sustainable Communities Challenge Fund is a provincial grant program for local action on climate change in Nova Scotia. It supports community efforts to reduce or remove greenhouse gas emissions, or to prepare for and respond to the impacts of a changing climate.

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Sustainable Communities Challenge Fund

A wide range of projects are eligible for funding, from renewable energy, to public outreach initiatives, to coastal restoration. The goal is to help communities implement the climate action they have decided is important to them.

The first round of available funding was open for applications November 7 – December 23, 2022 and is currently closed. Applicants will be notified of funding decisions in early April. The second round of funding will launch in spring 2023.

Issues of equity, affordability, and health and wellness are closely connected to our climate challenges. Urgent action is needed in places throughout Nova Scotia, and the Fund presents an opportunity include these important issues as part of the community-level climate change response.

Wind turbines

Who Can Apply?

The Fund is intended for community organizations and institutions. The following groups are eligible lead applicants:

  • Nova Scotia municipalities
  • First Nations bands and tribal councils
  • Post-secondary institutions
  • Registered non-profit organizations active in Nova Scotia

Collaboration, partnerships, and regional approaches between communities, organizations and sectors are encouraged. For-profit and private sector entities, social enterprises, and municipal-owned corporations can be eligible provided they partner with one of the organizations listed above, who will act as the lead proponent for the project.

Applications from organizations of Mi’kmaq peoples, African Nova Scotians, racialized peoples, immigrants, Acadians, individuals living on low incomes, individuals living with disabilities, older adults, youth, 2SLGBTQ+, and women will be favorably considered.

There are low-barrier supports to participate, available to projects that directly involve and benefit equity-deserving communities who disproportionately experience the negative effects of climate change and face barriers to mitigation efforts.


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Projects in the Mitigation Stream seek to avoid and reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to Nova Scotia’s targets for emission reduction. Focus areas under this stream include:

  • Buildings
  • Transportation
  • Energy generation and storage
  • Waste management and circular economy
  • Carbon storage and sequestration

Projects in the Adaptation Stream help communities improve their capacity to adapt to climate change, with the goal of reducing vulnerability and exposure of human and natural systems. Focus areas under this stream include:

  • Built environment and climate-ready infrastructure
  • Ecosystems and nature-based solutions
  • Community coordination and planning