TROY, N.Y.— The Media Alliance Center in North Central Troy recently found out they received a $250,000 grant to create the NATURE Lab Urban Environmental Education Center.
Governor Andrew Cuomo recently announced that Environmental Justice grants totaling $2 million have been awarded to four organizations for Urban Environmental Education Centers in New York City, Yonkers, Albany, and Troy, NY. The grants are from the State’s Environmental Protection fund and will support community-based efforts to educate urban residents about environmental issues.
“We will continue to invest in environmental education in New York’s underserved communities as we work to help inform and inspire residents,” Cuomo said in a news release. “New York is dedicated to furthering our environmental investments and initiatives that protect all New Yorkers, creating a cleaner and greener future for all.”
“These grants will fund community-based programs focused on educating New Yorkers about how to protect the environment and improve the health of their communities,” added Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul in the release. “This funding will provide New Yorkers with the opportunity to learn about environmental issues and help promote a sustainable clean energy future. In New York we are advancing aggressive energy goals to reduce carbon emissions and raise awareness about climate change to secure a cleaner and greener environment for generations to come.”
Administered by the State Department of Environmental Conservation with funds from New York’s Environmental Protection Fund, the grants were awarded to:

  • Media Alliance, Inc., Troy, NY – $250,000 to create the NATURE Lab Urban Environmental Education Center, a critical resource for the North Troy Art, Technology and Urban Research in Ecology Program.
  • Radix Ecological Sustainability Center, Albany, NY – $422,410 to expand the current educational facilities at the Radix Center by constructing an Ecological Justice Literacy Classroom.
  • Groundwork Hudson Valley, Yonkers, NY – $577,589 to upgrade the Science Barge to include aquaponics, water sanitization, wildlife observation, and outdoor classrooms.
  • WE ACT for Environmental Justice, New York, NY – $750,000 to develop an Urban Environmental Education Center that will provide free education programming for northern Manhattan residents.

“This support to build an urban environmental education center offers an extraordinary opportunity to a long-neglected, ecologically devastated community with incredible human and natural resources. Environmental justice has been a long time coming to North Central Troy. This grant plants a seed-we know change is going to come,” said Media Alliance Executive Director Steve Pierce in the release.
The Urban Environmental Education Center grants were announced in Governor Cuomo’s 2017 State of the State address. In 2017, $1 million was made available to fund education centers that would explore a broad range of topics such as urban ecology, environmental justice challenges, green technology, and urban environmental sustainability. An additional $1 million was made available in 2017 in response to the numerous proposals received during the application period.
“Supporting community-based efforts to inform communities about environmental quality and environmental justice is essential, and I’m proud of New York’s sustained efforts to provide environmental education. Through historic investments in the Environmental Protection Fund, Governor Cuomo is introducing innovative Environmental Justice efforts in communities across the state,” DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said in the release. “The Education Center grants announced today will provide new opportunities for New Yorkers in our cities to learn about environmental challenges, sustainability, and more, while supporting the work of community organizations as they promote environmental equity in their neighborhoods.”
For more information on the Environmental Justice Grants Program, visit the DEC website at or contact the DEC Office of Environmental Justice at 518-402-8556.