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Grants and Funding Opportunities for Great Lakes Projects

Great Lakes funding opportunities become available through EPA and other federal agencies. You can find many grant opportunities by searching Grants.gov.

Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI)

If your agency or organization is involved in Great Lakes restoration, we encourage you to seek funding through Great Lake's Restoration Initiative (GLRI) grant opportunities. If you are planning to apply for funds from any of the granting agencies, you are strongly encouraged to share your project idea with DNR Office of Great Waters staff, who can work with partner groups and write letters of support.

Learn more about GLRI and projects in Wisconsin.

State programs

Great Lakes Protection Fund
The Great Lakes Protection Fund is a private, nonprofit corporation formed in 1989 by the Governors of the Great Lakes States. It is a permanent environmental endowment that supports actions to improve the health of the Great Lakes ecosystem. Each year Wisconsin receives an allocation to fund state projects under the Wisconsin Great Lakes Restoration Strategy [PDF]. Wisconsin's share of the Great Lakes Protection Fund varies from year to year depending on the performance of the endowment.

State Wildlife Grants Program
Congress passed the State Wildlife Grants Program in 2001, making federal dollars available to prevent species and habitats from becoming endangered.

Coastal Management Grants
Approximately $1,500,000 is available through the Dept. of Administration's Wisconsin Coastal Management Program (WCMP) to enhance and restore coastal resources within the state's coastal zone – all counties adjacent to Lakes Superior and Michigan, with their 820 miles of shoreline.

Federal programs

National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) grants
There are a variety of grants through NFWF, including some specific to the Great Lakes region.

Sustain Our Great Lakes Program
Sustain Our Great Lakes is a public–private partnership designed to address these threats and improve the ecological health of the Great Lakes basin. Its mission is to sustain, restore, and protect fish, wildlife and habitat in the basin by leveraging funding, building conservation capacity and focusing partners and resources toward key ecological issues. The program achieves this mission, in part, by awarding grants for on-the-ground habitat restoration and enhancement.

U.S. EPA Great Lakes Funding
A variety of grants are available through the EPA Great Lakes Program Office (GLNPO). Visit their website and view Requests for Applications (RFAs) to see what is available.

Great Lakes Sediment and Nutrient Reduction Program
Funding is provided by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative under a cooperative agreement between the Great Lakes Commission and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service. The program provides grants to local and state units of government and nonprofit organizations to install erosion and sediment control practices in the Great Lakes basin.

Additional funding opportunities