The United States Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) contained the largest investments in climate action and technology in U.S. history, including funding to decarbonize U.S. industry and reduce embodied carbon emissions in building materials in the process. To help accomplish this goal, Section 60112 of the IRA provides $250 million to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to develop an Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) Assistance Program to “support the development, enhanced standardization and transparency and reporting criteria for environmental product declarations and reporting criteria for environmental product declarations.”

What Are EPDs?

An EPD quantifies and reports the environmental impacts of a product, based on the material extraction, manufacturing and transportation associated with it. EPDs are based on the collection of several environmental metrics (e.g. global warming potential) and in the US typically covers the “cradle to gate” stages of the product lifecycle.

On November 6th, 2023, the General Services Administration (GSA) announced that it would invest $2 billion of IRA funds in construction projects that use low-embodied carbon construction materials, building on the Federal Buy Clean Initiative. With the U.S. government and numerous states endeavoring to use greener building materials through these Buy Clean Initiatives, EPDs have become a necessary tool to guide government agencies toward the lowest emissions materials. Manufacturers of low-carbon products can create EPDs to certify that their products have lower than average embodied greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, allowing them to benefit from green procurement initiatives such as Buy Clean.

In September 2023, the EPA issued a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) opening up applications (due Jan. 16, 2024) for eligible entities to receive funding for projects related to environmental product declarations under Section 60112.

Key Dates

  • ASAP – All interested entities must register with and (this can take up to a few weeks)
  • November 2 and 14, 2023 – Informational Webinars (presentation slide deck and recording)
  • January 16, 2024 – Applications due at 11:59 p.m. (ET) through
  • Spring 2024 (estimated) – Notification of Funding Selection
  • Summer 2024 (estimated) – Awarding of Funding

Funding Information

The EPA will award up to $100 million worth of grants in fiscal year 2024, with individual grants ranging between $250,000 and $10 million for periods of up to five years. These awards may be made in full or in installments, depending on a number of factors including funding availability and project performance. Applications will be evaluated within three funding brackets based on the amount requested:

  1. $250,000 to $749,999
  2. $750,000 to $4.99 million
  3. $5 million to $10 million

In cases where some portions of a proposed project are ineligible for funding, the EPA may choose to award partial funding only to the eligible portions of a project.

Awards may be either grants or cooperative agreements in which the EPA will have “substantial involvement” in the performance of the project. Substantial involvement may entail performance monitoring and review, collaboration, scrutiny of personnel qualifications and feedback on publications prepared during the project.

Eligible Entities and Projects

This grant program is open to any U.S.-based businesses that produce construction materials, as well as U.S. state and territorial agencies, Native American tribes and non-profit organizations — including public or non-profit higher education institutions and certain private universities — that will support such businesses. Entities not incorporated in the U.S., local governments (as defined in CFR § 200.1) and for-profit businesses that do not manufacture construction materials are not eligible for this program.

Applicants can apply as individual entities, as inter-organizational partnerships or as pass-through entities (in which the applicant will provide subgrants to subrecipients).

In Section I-C of the NOFO, the EPA describes five categories for eligible projects:

  • Robust Data for EPDs:
    • Projects that contribute data, analysis and feedback to produce EPDs
  • Robust Product Category Rule (PCR) Standard Development, PCRs and Associated Conformity Assessment Systems:
    • Projects that encourage and facilitate the development of PCRs, which set the product-specific rules and guidelines for developing EPDs and define the scope of carbon accounting
  • Robust Tools & Resources to Support & Incentivize Development and Verification of EPDs:
    • Projects that develop tools and resources that facilitate production and disclosure of EPDs
  • EPD Development and Verification:
    • Projects in which manufacturers are producing EPDs or projects that assist manufacturers in producing EPDs
  • Robust EPD Data Platforms and Integration:
    • Projects that support EPD reporting and verification, “standardization of disparate EPD systems,” and support the integration of EPDs into construction design or procurement systems

Additionally, the EPA provides a more detailed list of sample projects for each category under Appendix B of the NOFO.

Application Evaluation Criteria

The EPA will evaluate all eligible applications against the following criteria (full descriptions can be found in Section V of the NOFO).



Description Weight

Criterion Weight

Strategy & Approach

Description of Proposed Project(s) and/or Technical Assistance Approach



Advancing Robustness of EPDs


Maximizing Efficiency and Reach Per Resources Requested


Prioritizing Material Categories and Material Types


Supporting Geographic Diversity of EPD Development


Supporting EPD Development Across Enterprises with Varied Production Volumes


Advancing Equitable Workforce Development


Addressing Additional Environmental Impacts and/or Benefits


Ensuring Long-term Success


Leveraging Expertise and Furthering Standardization Through Partnerships



Quality of Reporting Plan as Described in Section VI.C. as Relevant to the Proposed Project



Publish and Ensure Results as Described in Section VI.C.6 are Available to the Larger Efforts


Programmatic Capability & Environmental Results Past Performance

Project Completion and Reporting History



Organizational Experience and Plan


Staff Experience










Subaward Plan (if applicable)




Applications must also demonstrate how their proposed project will support the development or standardization of EPDs as well as how the project will contribute to the EPA Strategic Plan’s goals 1 (confronting the climate crisis), 2 (advancing environmental justice) and 3 (ensuring clean air).

Future Outlook

EPDs are emerging as an important tool for reporting the environmental impacts of construction materials. The EPA’s recently announced EPD assistance program will increase the uptake of EPDs by reducing costs and knowledge gaps and increasing consistency, reliability and accessibility. As this process unfolds, procurement of greener building materials should become easier and more streamlined as manufacturers become more capable of producing EPDs.

In addition to supporting Buy Clean policies, data and insights gained through EPDs could be used to support other emerging climate policies such as advance market commitments and carbon border adjustments, encouraging greener industry overall.