May 15, 2024 | From City of New Orleans

Mayor Cantrell Announces City of New Orleans Joins Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Youth Climate Action Fund to Activate Young People in Driving Solutions

New Orleans is one of 100 cities around the globe that will receive funding and technical assistance to spur youth-driven climate action. 

NEW ORLEANS — Mayor LaToya Cantrell today announced that the City of New Orleans will join Bloomberg Philanthropies’ new Youth Climate Action Fund, which will provide technical assistance and funding to activate tens of thousands of young people ages of 15 – 24 years to design, produce and govern urgent climate solutions in cities across the globe. With 84 percent of youth around the world reporting that they are worried climate change threatens people and the planet, this initiative grants young people the opportunity to get directly involved in tackling this global issue. New Orleans joins the Fund alongside cities from around the world, which together spans 38 countries across six continents, representing over 62 million residents. 

"The City of New Orleans being selected to participate in Bloomberg's Philanthropies Youth Climate Action Fund is such an exciting opportunity for our young people to get directly involved in our fight against our already changing climate,” said Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “Last December, Bloomberg sponsored Mayors, including myself, to participate in COP28 in Dubai. This initiative was kickstarted there as a part of the Local Climate Action Summit in order to get youth more involved in addressing environmental issues and climate adaptation. We have so many bright and talented young minds in our city, and I have heard directly from you how you are concerned about our climate and its effects on our great, but vulnerable, city. The City cannot wait to hear all your innovative ideas and projects to ensure our communities' resilience and perseverance for many more years to come." 

As part of this program, New Orleans has received $50,000 that will be dispersed by the Greater New Orleans Foundation as microgrants ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 to fund various youth-led climate initiatives that align with the City’s Climate Action Plan priority areas. The number of grants dispersed will vary depending on the amount asked per grant. From mobilizing tree-planting or public education campaigns to launching recycling or waste reduction initiatives to participating in mitigation planning or preparedness programs, efforts stemming from the new Youth Climate Action Fund will advance critical community goals, such as meeting decarbonization commitments or reducing consumption-based emissions.  

New Orleans’ participation is being managed by the Mayor’s Office of Youth and Families (OYF) and the Office of Resilience and Sustainability (ORS), along with community partner Greater New Orleans Foundation (GNOF). 

“Being a part of the Bloomberg Youth Climate Action Fund allows the City of New Orleans to continue offering young people the resources they deserve to amplify their work as changemakers,” said OYF Director Asya Howlette. “In alignment with the Youth Master Plan and the Big Green Easy, we are excited for the environment centered projects brought to life through this investment.” 

Over the last decade, local governments have played a critical role in climate mitigation and adaptation. The City of New Orleans released its first Climate Action Plan in 2017, joining cities around the world in a commitment to uphold the goals of the Paris Agreement and to reduce its contribution to climate change. An updated plan was released in 2022, setting ambitious goals to reduce the city’s greenhouse gas emissions 50 percent by 2035 and to achieve net-zero, or carbon neutrality, by 2050, with targeted actions to reduce the City’s carbon footprint in the areas of energy, transportation, waste, economic growth and adaptation.  More information on the City’s climate action plan can be found at

“Youth-led organizing and activism was integral to passing the Inflation Reduction Act, the most significant investment in climate action in our nation’s history,” said ORS Deputy Chief Resilience Officer Greg Nichols. “This funding is an important step towards harnessing local youth energy on climate action, and the Office of Resilience and Sustainability is excited to engage with local community organizations that are spearheading youth-led initiatives aligned with our city’s path to a net-zero carbon future.” 

Kickstarted at the Bloomberg Philanthropies Mayors Innovation Studio at COP28, as a part of the Local Climate Action Summit, the Bloomberg Philanthropies Youth Climate Action Fund will provide the cities with the tools, techniques and support to leverage innovation approaches that invite and foster robust youth collaboration in climate problem-solving and policymaking. The program will be delivered by United Cities and Local Governments in partnership with the Bloomberg Center for Public Innovation at Johns Hopkins University. C40 Cities and the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy will collaborate as learning partners. 

“Climate change is an all-hands-on-deck challenge, and it’s critical that young people – who have the most at stake – help lead the way,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, UN Special Envoy on Climate Ambition and Solutions and 108th Mayor of New York City. “This new fund will help mayors mobilize and empower tomorrow’s leaders to take action today.” 

Young residents ages 15 - 24 years that are supported by youth-serving organizations are encouraged to visit to learn more about the Bloomberg Youth Climate Action Fund and how to submit ideas for the opportunity to receive funding. Applications will open on June 1 and will be available on the above website. The application deadline is July 1, and the winners will be announced at the beginning of August. Cities that respond to the urgency of the moment and commit the initial $50,000 by the end of December 2024 will receive an additional $100,000 to support more youth-driven projects over the course of one year.    

Proposed project applications must be submitted by a youth-serving organization that can accept grant funds. If the youth-led group is not an incorporated entity, they may partner with a fiscal agent that can accept and administer funds. 

Project ideas may include: 

  • Youth-led awareness, education, research and development initiatives, including: youth-led climate education programs, climate hackathons, climate surveys and research, as well as youth-informed clubs or curriculum, public art and awareness campaigns 
  •  Youth-driven climate mitigation and adaptation projects, including: youth-led community gardening, tree planting, reforestation and urban farming campaigns; youth-managed recycling and waste reduction programs and youth-produced climate resilience workshops and disaster preparedness programs 
  • Co-governed youth climate action plans, including: partnerships between City leaders and youth groups to inform climate-related policy ideas, decisions or actions or the formation of youth climate ambassadors or advisory boards 

For more information about the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Youth Climate Action Fund, please visit their website


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About Bloomberg Philanthropies

Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in 700 cities and 150 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on creating lasting change in five key areas: the Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s giving, including his foundation, corporate and personal philanthropy, as well as Bloomberg Associates, a philanthropic consultancy that advises cities around the world. In 2023, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $3 billion. For more information, please visit, sign up for our newsletter, or follow us on InstagramLinkedInYouTube, ThreadsFacebook and X