States’ Environmental Investments Continue to Grow: State Economic Development Expenditures Database Update
With the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) at the close end of one of the hottest summers on record, particular focus is being paid to environmental sustainability efforts across the country. As the green sector of America’s economy continues to grow, states have increased investment into environmentally focused economic development. Starting in 2016 with the signing of the Paris Climate accords, total spending has risen from $48 million in funding to a peak of $475 million in 2022. That almost 10-fold increase in spending was originally spurred by funds outside General Fund and Federal Assistance. Only in more recent years are states starting to shift and dedicate more General Fund spending to green initiatives as states begin to rely less on other funding sources. In calculating state investment on environmental economic development, CREC analyzed state level spending on direct investment to green businesses, workforce support and retraining for jobs in the green economy, and support for industrial revitalization. These economic development programs are almost always focused on firms or employers.
The database serves as the premier tool for researchers to easily access, explore, and analyze economic development spending at the state level with the data directly hand extracted from each state’s governor’s recommended budget. The database is updated on an annual basis and is available here to all subscribers and C2ER members.
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