Various grants and other funding opportunities for marine debris activities can be found below. Please navigate to each opportunity for detailed information on timeline, scope, and how to apply.
Proposals are due January 3, 2018
The National Geographic Society recently announced an increased investment in science, education, and storytelling through our 127-year-old grant program (see announcement here). As part of this exciting new phase of investment in making this a healthier and more sustainable planet, National Geographic has created a series of Requests for Proposal (RFPs) intended to focus our funding around certain key issues, including Reducing Marine Plastic Pollution.
National Geographic seeks to support work to mitigate specific threats to ecosystems in which targeted investment could be scaled up to make a major difference. One of the most pressing threats to emerge over the past decade is the problem of marine debris, especially plastic, which does not readily biodegrade; instead it breaks down into smaller pieces. Plastic of all sizes is highly transportable and threatens ecosystems and wildlife, who either eat it or get tangled up in debris. Recent estimates predict that by 2050, the ocean will contain more plastic than fish by weight and awareness of the need to reduce plastic pollution has grown.
Priority will be given to projects that aim to do one or more of the following:
- Increase local awareness and engagement to change consumer behavior and reduce the quantity of plastic that is used and discarded
- Develop innovations to stop plastic from reaching waterways through recycling or other means
- Implement innovative teaching methods that engage students in investigating and creating solutions for problems related to marine plastics
- Focus on geographic gaps in knowledge (e.g., Africa) or on known hotspots contributing most to the marine plastic pollution problem
- Engage new audiences in seeking solutions (e.g., product designers) to the plastic problem