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Gulf of Mexico Funding Calendar

(L) Kassey Trahanas cleaning an oyster. Photo credit: Ruth Carmichael (C) Researchers in the Gulf work to better understand how seagrass is used as a habitat and resource for fish species like the flounder seen here. Photo credit: Kelly Darnell (R) Ronald Baker’s fisheries lab samples benthic habitats for early life stages of fish. Photo credit: John Lehrter

The science and restoration programs working in the Gulf of Mexico understand the need for the Gulf community to stay updated with funding announcements in the region. The calendar below includes currently planned funding opportunities from programs in the Gulf region that have received funding as a consequence of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Descriptions of the programs and a guide to apply is also included below. If you have a question or a resource to share, contact the Science Program at noaarestorescience@noaa.gov.

Calendar: Scroll through the upcoming months to see planned opportunities for 2023 and 2024. Additional opportunities and details may be released as programs develop and finalize their funding opportunities, especially for years 2024 and beyond. A list of current opportunities is also included below the calendar.

Gulf of Mexico Funding Programs: Descriptions of funding programs in the Gulf of Mexico are described with details how funding competitions are conducted and key points of contact. 

General Guide to Applying for Funding: A step-by-step guide on the basic process that many funding opportunities follow is described. Resources and key terms are defined. 

To track restoration, research, and recovery projects resulting from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, check out the Deepwater Horizon Project TrackerTo view funding opportunities in the broader Gulf of Mexico community, visit the GOMA Funding Opportunities page.

Events in February 2024

  • February 1, 2024 (1 event)


    February 1, 2024

    This informational webinar is about the third Request for Proposals (RFP3) from the RESTORE Act Center of Excellence of Louisiana (LA-COE). The webinar will provide background information on the LA-COE and review the details of the RFP. Attendance is encouraged for interested coastal researchers, both student and professional, who wish to apply for funding under the RFP.

    In preparation for this webinar, we encourage participants to review the RFP and FAQs on the LA-COE website, linked here.

    Additional questions may be submitted during the webinar.

    Register here. 

    More information

  • February 7, 2024 (1 event)

    February 7, 2024

    The Gulf Research Program’s Science Policy Fellowship program helps scientists hone their skills by putting them to practice for the benefit of Gulf Coast communities and ecosystems. Fellows gain first-hand experience as they spend one year on the staff of federal, state, local, or non-governmental environmental, natural resource, oil and gas, and public health agencies in the Gulf of Mexico region.

    All application materials, including the letters of recommendation, must be submitted through our online application system by February 7, 2024, at 5:00 PM ET. If you have difficulties submitting materials through our online application system, contact us at GulfFellowships@nas.edu.

    More information

List of Current Opportunities

Scroll through the calendar for details on the opportunities listed below. The dates listed with each item below are the opening and closing dates of the funding opportunity. 

Gulf of Mexico Funding Programs

ALCoE’s mission is to provide results from innovative, forward looking research conducted on areas of coastal concern to interested members of government, academic community, and the public. Funded projects are recommended for funding through an external technical panel review organized by the MIssissippi-Alabama Sea Grant which provides ranked reviews to the ALCoE Administrative Team. Contact Program Manager, Dottie Byron at dbyron@disl.org for further information.

Funding opportunities with the Florida RESTORE Act Centers of Excellence Program are expected to be released in 2024. Please contact Nicole Raineault, nicoleraineault@usf.edu, for more information or visit our website.

Florida Institute of Oceanography is the Gulf Coast State Entity responsible for administering the Florida RESTORE Act Centers of Excellence Program (FLRACEP). This program establishes Centers of Excellence in the State of Florida to conduct research related to one or more of the priority eligible disciplines named in the RESTORE Act through a competitive grants process. Grants support science, technology, and monitoring in the Gulf of Mexico, focused on Florida’s waters and coastal environments. Funding comes from the Resources and Ecosystems Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast States Act of 2012 (RESTORE Act), which established a Gulf Coast Restoration Trust Fund in the U.S. Treasury. Program strategy and funding decisions are made by a seven-member Program Management Team made up of senior advisors based on their knowledge of Gulf of Mexico and Florida regional science, technology and management needs. A decadal review is underway and will culminate in the publication of a program impact report and strategic plan early 2024 to coincide with the Gulf of Mexico Conference in Tampa, Florida.

The Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council (RESTORE Council) is a federal agency that includes the governors of the States of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas and the Secretaries of the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, the Army, Commerce, Homeland Security, the Interior and the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The RESTORE Council funds and implements projects and programs through its individual Council member agencies, who may solicit proposal ideas for projects and/or programs from other entities. These proposals can be submitted to the RESTORE Council for funding consideration. 

The RESTORE Council offers opportunities for public comment on Council-led activities. Subscribe to receive RESTORE EBlast, automatic email updates from the RESTORE Council. You can also visit the RESTORE Council Story Map to learn more about previously funded projects.

The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) is no longer funding competitive projects. GoMRI continues to support the GRIIDC data system and the GoMRI website. All data collected under GoMRI funding will continue to be accessible through GRIIDC.

The mission of MBRACE is to seek sound, comprehensive science and technology-based understanding of the chronic and acute stressors, both anthropogenic and natural, on the dynamic and productive waters and ecosystems of the northern Gulf of Mexico and to facilitate sustainable use of the Gulf’s important resources.

MBRACE focuses on five eligible disciplines:

  1. Coastal and deltaic sustainability, restoration and protection, including solutions and technology that allow citizens to live in a safe and sustainable manner in a coastal delta in the Gulf Coast Region
  2. Coastal fisheries and wildlife ecosystem research and monitoring in the Gulf Coast Region
  3. Offshore energy development, including research and technology to improve the sustainable and safe development of energy resources in the Gulf of Mexico
  4. Sustainable and resilient growth, economic and commercial development in the Gulf of Mexico
  5. Comprehensive observation, monitoring, and mapping of the Gulf of Mexico. Competitive awards are open to researchers from the University of Southern Mississippi, Mississippi State, the University of Mississippi, and Jackson State University.

More information about MBRACE can be found on the program’s website: https://mbrace.usm.edu.

Funding opportunities with the National Academy of Sciences Gulf Research Program open throughout the year. These funding opportunities fall into four key areas, including: human health and community resilience, environmental protection and stewardship, education and engagement, and offshore energy safety.

For more information on our current funding opportunities, please visit our website.

Have a question about Gulf Research Program grants? Email GulfGrants@nas.edu.

NFWF anticipates carrying out one project selection cycle per year. NFWF will begin the project review process each spring through intense consultation with state and federal resource agencies. NFWF will consult with state natural resource agencies, NOAA, and USFWS to identify projects that meet conditions of the plea agreements to be supported by the fund. NFWF retains sole authority to make final decisions.

As of March, 2023, NFWF has obligated all available funds in Alabama, Louisiana, and Texas.

For more information please visit the https://www.nfwf.org/gulf-environmental-benefit-fund.

The NOAA RESTORE Science Program conducts funding competitions to support applied ecosystem science including the co-production of science, long-term trends, and synthesis science. To date, funding competitions have been released every other year while synthesis Request for Proposals are announced annually. Researcher and resource manager teams and their projects are selected following rigorous and highly competitive processes which included a review by panels of outside experts. Awards demonstrate the NOAA RESTORE Science Program’s commitment to producing timely and high-quality scientific findings and products to support the management and sustainability of the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem, including its fisheries.

To learn more about research and funding competitions in the Gulf of Mexico, subscribe to the email list or email noaarestorescience@noaa.gov.

Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) restoration projects and activities are funded by Trustee Implementation Groups (TIGs), as overseen by the Deepwater Horizon NRDA Trustee Council. There are currently seven active TIGs – one for each of the five Gulf states, a Region Wide TIG, and an Open Ocean TIG.

Each TIG selects restoration projects for implementation through Restoration Plans that are made available in draft form for public comment. Monitoring and adaptive management projects may also be included in TIG restoration plans, or the TIGs may develop and implement monitoring and adaptive management activities outside of the restoration planning process, as needed. While each TIG has its own restoration planning process and timelines, announcements related to TIG restoration planning milestones and opportunities for public comment are posted on each TIG’s webpage within the NRDA Trustee Council websites.

In addition, each TIG provides opportunities for the public to offer restoration project ideas through the Trustee Council project idea submission database as well as through project idea submission databases run by each of the five Gulf States:

You can also sign up at gulfspullrestoration.noaa.gov to receive NRDA Trustee Council email updates, which include requests for project ideas as each TIG begins work on a new restoration plan.

The mission of the RESTORE Act Center of Excellence for Louisiana (LA-COE) is to provide research directly relevant to implementation of Louisiana’s Coastal Master Plan by administering a competitive grants program and providing the appropriate coordination and oversight support to ensure that success metrics are tracked and achieved.

Contact Brittany Jensen (bjensen@thewaterinstitute.org) for more information or questions.

Texas OneGulf is focused on science driven solutions to Gulf problems. The Texas OneGulf process gathers input from Texas stakeholders and through Texas policy and decision makers, NGOs, business and industry, and human health institutes. Funded projects are selected through a Committee-based Selection Process. Consultation between the Texas OneGulf Consortium Leadership and the Texas OneGulf Agency Council, in conjunction with the Strategic Research and Action Plan, is used to identify tiered, priority decision-making needs, which are then crafted into research questions that form the basis of proposals from OneGulf members. Proposals must be developed through a co-production process that involves interdisciplinary researchers (as appropriate) and research end-users.

Contact Christine Hale for further information (christine.hale@tamucc.edu)

The Centers of Excellence Research Grants Program, administered by the Department of the Treasury, makes available 2.5% of all administrative and civil penalties deposited into the Trust Fund plus 25% of interest earned on the Trust Fund to the five Gulf Coast states.

Eligible applicants are specified by the RESTORE Act and Treasury’s implementing regulations at 31 CFR 34.702. Only the following entities may apply for funding under this announcement:

  1. The Alabama Gulf Coast Recovery Council or such administrative agent as it may designate
  2. The Florida Institute of Oceanography
  3. The Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority Board of Louisiana, through the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority of Louisiana (pursuant to 31 CFR 34.702)
  4. The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality
  5. The Office of the Governor of the State of Texas, or an appointee of the Office of the Governor

Trust Fund amounts are available to establish one or more Centers of Excellence through competitive subawards to nongovernmental entities and consortia in the Gulf Coast Region, including institutions of higher education. Funds may be used by those Centers of Excellence for science, technology, and monitoring in one or more of the following disciplines:

  1. Coastal and deltaic sustainability, restoration, and protection, including solutions and technology that allow citizens to live in a safe and sustainable manner in a coastal delta in the Gulf Coast Region
  2. Coastal fisheries and wildlife ecosystem research and monitoring in the Gulf Coast Region
  3. Offshore energy development, including research and technology to improve the sustainable and safe development of energy resources in the Gulf of Mexico
  4. Sustainable and resilient growth, economic and commercial development in the Gulf Coast Region
  5. Comprehensive observation, monitoring, and mapping of the Gulf of Mexico.

For more information, click here or contact Shelby Servais at shelby.servais@treasury.gov.

General Guide to Applying for Funding

Applying for funding opportunities can feel daunting, especially if it’s your first time navigating a lengthy application process. Each call for proposals is different, with varying requirements, eligibility, and forms to submit. In general, funding opportunities follow the steps below but be sure to check with each funding program on their specific requirements and guidelines:

    1. A funding opportunity is announced. A description of the call for funding proposals is shared and an informational webinar, where you can learn more about the funding opportunity, is scheduled. Office hours may also be available to schedule one-on-one meetings with program staff. 
    2. Determine if your organization is eligible to apply. If it is a fit, register at the correct website. Each funding opportunity will have its own instructions on where to register for more information. Registering will help you make sure you don’t miss important deadlines and updates. It is important to register and get started on the process as soon as possible. Read the announcement carefully for additional registrations that will be needed in order to submit an application.
    3. A letter of intent is due. Once you submit your letter of intent, you will typically receive correspondence from program staff on whether you are invited to submit a full proposal. Sometimes this correspondence will include suggestions on revisions to make to your project plan for a more successful proposal. 
    4. A full proposal is due. The program’s call for proposals should have specific instructions on everything to be included in the full proposal. It is important to follow instructions closely and to contact program staff with any questions or clarifications. 
    5. Proposals will be reviewed. Every program has a different process for reviewing proposals. This may involve a group reviewing the proposal individually or a panel where proposals are discussed by a selection committee. Once the review process is complete, the program will select proposals to further investigate. 
    6. The program will work with applicants to clarify details of the award. Before final funding decisions are made, program staff may contact you for more information about the project’s scope, geographic area, project team, or other details to help ensure that all eligibility requirements and criteria are met. 
    7. Awards will be announced. Once the program has completed all of its review processes, applicants will be notified on the status of their proposals. The program will then work with the selected project teams to announce their awards and start setting up to begin the projects. 

Because each application process varies, it is important to review any information provided by the program and follow up with any questions. Don’t hesitate to ask questions! If a part of the application process is not clear, it is good for program staff to know so they can be sure to provide more clarification for future funding opportunities. 

See below for a list of resources that provide guidance on writing and submitting funding proposals. If you have a resource to share, please email us at noaarestorescience@noaa.gov.

  • Co-Production or Collaborative Science – the collaboration of researchers, resource managers, and others, including resource users, across the four phases of a research project that will inform a specific natural resource management decision. Those four phases are 1) scoping, 2) design, 3) research and development, and 4) transfer and application of findings and products.
  • Full Proposal – this full application or proposal is the last chance to communicate your work plan. A project narrative, budget, letters of support or participation, and other required elements, dependent on the program, are part of the full proposal.
  • Funding Priority – an outline of the type of work the particular competition addresses. Funders are interested in proposals that align with their priorities.
  • Letter of Intent (LOI) – a concise description of the intended work and relevance to the funding competition. Submitting a letter of intent may be optional or required to be considered at the full proposal evaluation.
  • Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) –  the announcement of an opportunity to compete for federal funding. This new term replaces the previous, Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO). The notice of funding opportunity will include information such as eligibility and priorities of the federal agency, as well as the details for submitting a proposal. This is the most comprehensive document to refer to throughout the process.
  • Request for Proposals (RFP) – the announcement of an opportunity to compete for funding. The request for proposals will include the requirements for a proposal and instructions for submission.