The Environmental Literacy Program offers competitive grant funding.

Education grants in support of NOAA's mission

Working at national, regional, and local levels, our funded projects educate and inspire people to use Earth systems science to improve ecosystem stewardship and increase resilience to environmental hazards. Education plays a critical role in achieving NOAA’s mission and vision. To make the best social, economic, and environmental decisions, individuals should have the ability to understand scientific processes, consider uncertainty, and reason about the ways human and natural systems interact (NOAA's Education Strategic Plan, 2015–2035). Since 2005, our grants have supported formal (K-12) and informal education projects that cultivate these skillsets among diverse audiences.

Environmental Literacy Grants (ELG)

NOAA's Office of Education regularly offers the Environmental Literacy Grants competition. Since 2015, this competition has focused on helping communities build the environmental literacy necessary for resilience to extreme weather events and other environmental hazards. Read about our 2018 awards

NOAA's mission is directed toward a vision of the future where communities and their ecosystems are healthy and resilient in the face of sudden or prolonged change. To achieve this vision, NOAA strives to understand current Earth system conditions, project future changes, and help people make informed decisions that reduce their vulnerability to environmental hazards and stresses that emerge over time, while at the same time, increase their ability to cope with them. Environmental Literacy Grants are creating new models for how education can improve community resilience.

ELG competition status

In October of 2019, the NOAA Office of Education’s Environmental Literacy Program will issue a competitive funding opportunity for projects designed to build the environmental literacy of K-12 students and the public for community resilience. 

This funding opportunity will have two separate priorities. Priority 1 awards are intended to fund new projects located in Southern and Western Regions of the United States. The Southern Region includes the following states and territories:  Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, Tennessee, Texas, and the United States Virgin Islands. The Western Region includes the following states and territories: Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon, Utah, and Washington. Pre-applications for this Priority are required and will be due late fall 2019. We plan to issue a funding opportunity, including a Priority to support projects from the Eastern and Central regions, which comprise the remainder of the country, in fall 2021. 

Priority 2 awards are intended to continue support of projects previously funded under the 2015-2018 funding opportunities from this program (NOAA-SEC-OED-2015-2004408, NOAA-SEC-OED-2016-2004737, and NOAA-SEC-OED-2018-2005455). There will be no pre-application phase for this priority; full applications will be due winter 2020. 

2018-2019: Supporting the Education of K-12 Students and the Public for Community Resilience 
Competition Summary
2016-2017: Strengthening the Public's and/or K-12 Students' Environmental Literacy for Community Resilience

Competition Summary

2015: ELG for Community Resilience to Extreme Weather Events and Environmental Changes
Competition Summary
2013: ELG for Building Capacity of Informal and Formal Educators


2012: Ocean Education Partnership Grants


2011-2012: ELG for Formal K-12 Education


2010: ELG for Informal/Nonformal Education


2009: Ocean Education Grants for AZA Aquariums


2009: ELG for Science On a Sphere Network Capacity Building


2008-2009: ELG for Formal K-12 Education


2008: ELG for Spherical Display Systems for Earth Systems Science-Installations & Content


2007: ELG for Formal K-12 Education


2007: ELG for Free-choice Learning


2006: Science On a Sphere Installation Cooperative Agreements


2006: Environmental Literacy


2005: Environmental Literacy

For questions about the Environmental Literacy Program, please email