Deadline: November 25, 2013
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is soliciting proposals from eligible applicants for projects that will advance EPA’s water quality and environmental justice goals. Note that, for this grant cycle, projects proposed for funding must take place entirely within and focus on one of 18 specific Eligible Geographic Areas, as listed in Section I.A and illustrated on the Urban Waters Small Grants program mapping website (http://www2.epa.gov/urbanwaters/urban-waters-small-grants-mapping).
The goal of the Urban Waters Small Grants program is to fund research, investigations, experiments, training, surveys, studies, and demonstrations that will advance the restoration of urban waters by improving water quality through activities that also support community revitalization, economic development, and other local priorities, with an emphasis on underserved communities.
If the proposal is for a demonstration project, then the applicant must describe how it meets the requirements for demonstration projects, discussed in Section I.C. In general, projects should meet the following four program objectives (as described in Sections I.A and IV.C): Address local urban water quality issues; and Engage, educate and empower; and Support community priorities; and Involve underserved communities.
In addition, proposals will be evaluated on the extent and quality of how the project will accomplish its goals through the use of appropriate and diverse partnerships, as discussed in Sections IV.C and V.A. For the purposes of this announcement, the term “underserved communities” refers to communities with environmental justice concerns and/or susceptible populations.
Communities with environmental justice concerns include minority, low-income, tribal, and indigenous populations or communities that potentially experience disproportionate environmental harms and risks as a result of greater vulnerability to environmental hazards. Susceptible populations include groups that are at a high risk of suffering the adverse effects of environmental hazards such as, but not limited to, pregnant women, the elderly, and young children.
For more details on the term “urban” as defined in this announcement, see Section IV.C. For the purposes of this announcement, the term “urban waters” or “urban water body” may include any body of water (e.g., wetlands, rivers, lakes, bays, estuaries, reservoirs, canals, groundwater, etc) that meets this definition.
Eligible applicants include States, local governments, territories, Indian Tribes, and possessions of the U.S. (including the District of Columbia), public and private universities and colleges, public or private nonprofit institutions/organizations, intertribal consortia, and interstate agencies are eligible to apply. See Section III.A for more details.
The funding provided under this announcement supports the following goals of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2011–2015 EPA Strategic Plan: Goal 2: Protecting America’s Waters, Objective 2.2: Protect and Restore Watershed and Aquatic Ecosystems. Information on the FY 2011–2015 EPA Strategic Plan is available at http://www.epa.gov/planandbudget/strategicplan.html.
The EPA funding is expected to be $40,000 to $60,000 for each award. The total estimated funding available for the awards under this competition is anticipated to be approximately $1.6 million, with $800,000 currently available and up to an estimated additional $800,000 anticipated in FY 2014.
While it is expected that the Selection Official will select at least one award per Region and/or Eligible Geographic Area, the Selection Official reserves the right to select multiple awards per Region, multiple awards per Eligible Geographic Area, no awards per Region or per Eligible Geographic Area, or the top ranked proposals for each Region or Eligible Geographic Area, depending on the rankings and other factors described in Section V.B. EPA funding is contingent upon Agency funding levels, the quality of proposals received, and other applicable considerations.
Applicants may not request more than $60,000 in EPA funding – proposals requesting more than $60,000 in EPA funds will not be reviewed. While there is no minimum, EPA suggests applicants request at least approximately $40,000 in EPA funds. A minimum non-federal cost share/match of $4,000 is required (see Section III.B for information on the cost share/match requirement). It is anticipated that funded cooperative agreements will have a one-to two-year project period.