FEMA commits $33 million for dam safety

18 May 2022

The Biden Adminstration, through FEMA, is committing $33 million for two funding opportunities to enhance dam safety efforts across the US, with $15 million coming from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

The Rehabilitation of High Hazard Potential Dams program is making $22 million available with another approximately $11 million available through the National Dam Safety State Assistance Grant Program.

President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is providing $6.8 billion that FEMA will invest in communitywide resilience to reduce disaster suffering and avoid future disaster costs, including $733 million in dam safety grants over the next five years. 

“Aging and deteriorating dams in America cannot compete with the impacts of climate change,” said FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell. “With the increase of both extreme storms and downstream populations, the safety of America’s dams is paramount to the resilience of our neighborhoods. FEMA is committed to providing funding dedicated to maintaining and strengthening dams that pose severe risks to vulnerable communities.”  

The application period for the fiscal year 2022 funding opportunities opened on 16 May with a deadline of 15 July 2022. 

Grants through the Rehabilitation of High Hazard Potential Dams program are available to non-federal governments and nonprofits for technical, planning, design and construction assistance to rehabilitate eligible high hazard potential dams.

Eligible non-federal dams are:

  • Located in a state or territory with a dam safety program
  • Classified as high hazard potential by the dam safety agency in the state or territory where the dam is located
  • With a current, approved emergency action plan by the state or territorial dam safety agency
  • Failing to meet minimum dam safety standards of the state or territory or poses an unacceptable risk to the public
  • The State Assistance Grant Program provides funds to establish and maintain effective state programs that ensure dam safety and protect human life and property.

In a state or territory with an enacted dam safety program, the state administrative agency or an equivalent state agency is eligible to apply. Each eligible state or territory may submit only one grant application.

For more information, visit FEMA's Dam Safety webpage.


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