The USDA Approves $500K in Climate Change Money to Repair Parking Lots

Another celeb was caught racking up miles on a private plane while shivering about climate change. Harrison Ford is the culprit. It’s a shame, as I was a child in the 1980s and a huge fan of Indiana Jones and Han Solo. Fox News reports that Ford’s plane traveled 5,284 miles and produced 35 metric tons of carbon dioxide. Yes, it’s old news. Another star who has every right to ignore the risks of global warming/cooling/whatever since he has important things to do and is rich and famous.

The rules for climate change are likely to be accepted by those in power. What happens if federal funds that were intended for climate change are not used for the climate?

Just the News reports on $740K in USDA grants to rural Pennsylvania, which is intended to aid communities fighting climate change. According to a press release, about $195,000 in federal funds went towards decreasing carbon footprints and saving the planet. A large portion of this money was spent on solar panels and other photovoltaic devices. Fair enough. It doesn’t matter if you agree or disagree with climate change. At least the cash was used for projects that were designed for it.

Bloomsburg, PA was awarded $500,000 to repair four parking lots. The release states that this money will be used to benefit 30 local businesses. That is fine. Local businesses should succeed. How do you get $500,000 climate cash to parking lots? They are only available for electric and hybrid vehicles. Are there signs that ban trucks and cars with internal combustion engines? Parking lots are fine. Many cities don’t have enough parking lots. However, I believed that combating climate change meant that we had to reduce the number of cars in cities and make mass transport a reality for more people.

In fact, I know a lot about how it happened. I’ve spent some time researching federal grant procurement and it was a very interesting world. Every agency has its wish list. I’ve been in meetings where I was told to “pound the sand” because another agency wanted it. Federal grant meetings are not for friends. In many cases, the success or failure of a federal grant meeting will depend on how well you write it. It’s something I have done before, and it is an awful experience that I will never repeat. Someone, somewhere, figured out how you can write an application for money to lower the CO2 level in the air and to use it to improve parking spaces. It happens. It happens. The people of Bloomsburg, who saw an opportunity and took advantage of it, can be praised for their efforts to work the system. It seems that the system won’t change anytime soon.