Find Nonprofit and Small Business Grants

Advance Search

Only Available for Paid Subscribers
Clear Filters
Search Filters

Research Grants and Projects

Grants to USA, Canada, and International Research
Institutions to Address Sustainability in Waste Management

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

Add to My Calendar 

Environmental Research and Education Foundation (EREF)

Deadline Date:

05/01/20 - Close of Business (5:00 PM ET) Receipt


Request a Grant Writer

Grants to USA, Canada, and International research institutions for studies addressing sustainability in solid waste management practices. Applicants proposing certain research topics must contact program staff prior to submitting a pre-proposal. Research topic areas include recycling, waste minimization, conversion to energy and other products, waste diversion, and landfilling.

The EREF Board of Directors has set an initiative to ensure research funded reflects EREF’s long-term strategic plan to address all areas of integrated solid waste management, with a strong focus towards research that increased sustainable solid waste management practices. EREF defines solid waste to include:

  • Municipal solid waste (e.g. residential, commercial, institutional)
  • Construction & demolition debris
  • Certain industrial wastes (e.g. exploration & production waste, coal ash) and
  • Other wastes typically managed by the solid waste industry or generated by the public not included in the above items (e.g. electronic waste, disaster debris, etc).
  • Agricultural wastes (that aren’t handled by the waste industry), nuclear waste, and land applied wastewater treatment sludge are generally not included in this definition.

Pre-proposal topics must relate to sustainable solid waste management practices and pertain to the following topic areas:

  1. Waste minimization
  2. Recycling
  3. Waste conversion to energy, biofuels, chemicals or other useful products.  This includes, but is not limited to, the following technologies: Waste-to-energy, anaerobic digestion, composting, and other thermal or biological conversion technologies
  4. Strategies to promote diversion to higher and better uses (e.g. organics diversion, market analysis, optimized material management, logistics, etc.)
  5. Landfilling

Desirable aspects of the above topics, in addition to or as part of hypothesis-driven applied research, also include: economic or cost/benefit analyses, feasibility studies for untested technologies or management strategies, life cycle analysis or inventory, and analyses of policies that relate to the above.

Grants are typically not provided to support the development of educational projects.  However, collaborations or partnerships with entities seeking to develop educational materials for sustainable solid waste management, including conferences or events, which advance the Foundation’s educational mission may be considered.  It is preferred that this be done with EREF being a primary stakeholder/partner in the event and that utilizes a revenue model that covers expenses for the project.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 170682

Estimated Size of Grant:

Previously awarded grants have ranged from $15,000 to over $500,000 with the average grant amount in recent years being $160,000. It should be noted that proposed research in excess of $300,000 should contain sufficient details that justify the need for the higher than average amount requested.

Term of Contract:

Typical project durations are about 2 years. It should be noted that proposed research longer than 3 years should contain sufficient details that justify the need for the longer project duration.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Non-U.S. Institutions:
There are no restrictions in regards to geographic location. Any U.S. or non-U.S. institutions are eligible to apply.

Non-Academic Institutions:
Proposals will be accepted from non-academic institutions provided the principal investigators are qualified to conduct the research.

Submissions may include multiple institutions.

Principal investigators (PI) must be qualified to do the work proposed and should be experts in the subject matter referenced in the pre-proposal/proposal. Typically this would include full-time faculty at academic institutions, post-doctoral employees, and principals or senior personnel at non-academic institutions. Graduate students are not eligible to be principal investigators. However, graduate students are encouraged to consider applying to EREF’s scholarship program (see the EREF website for details).

Pre-Proposal submissions are limited to two (2) submissions per principal investigator during a particular submission period. Beyond this, the PI cannot be listed as a PI or co-PI on other submissions that round, but may be listed as a supporting investigator on other submissions.

Pre-proposals that did not receive an invitation to submit a full proposal may re-submit a revised version of the original pre-proposal once, and thereafter, approval must be obtained by EREF beforehand. In the event a research topic is very closely related to a prior submittal by the same entity, EREF staff will make any determinations regarding whether or not a submitted proposal constitutes a re-submittal.

EREF will not pay indirect or overhead costs in excess of 25% of direct costs. For non-academic institutions, the definition of overhead can vary. However, typically this refers to payment that denotes a time and materials rate multiplier of 1.25. Please contact EREF if your firm does not fit this model to discuss defining an appropriate overhead definition.

It is EREF’s policy that all results from funded projects are made publicly available and are without bias. Thus, EREF will typically avoid funding proposals prepared with the following aims:
-To directly commercialize and/or patent a particular technology or process
-To provide venture capital or operating funds for start-up companies
-To provide funds that primarily aid in the formation or initialization of community programs (e.g. recycling programs, re-use projects, etc)
-To directly support lobbying activities
-To fund conferences or events, except as noted under “Educational Projects”
-To conduct research or evaluations with an extremely narrow scope. Examples include projects that impact a small portion of the solid waste stream, benefit a single entity or community, or that cover a very small geographical area (e.g. a single county or town).

Pre-Application Information:

EREF has two deadlines per year for pre-proposals:
- December 1
- May 1

Pre-proposals are required prior to submitting a full proposal using the pre-proposal template. All pre-proposals shall be submitted through an online application. Upon submission, pre-proposals will be examined by a selection committee and successful pre-proposals will be invited to submit a full proposal for consideration.

A number of topics may require approval before a pre-proposal will be considered. Investigators who would like to propose a research topic where the primary objectives relate to the areas listed below should contact EREF to discuss the topic prior to submitting a pre-proposal. To do this, please email a description of the proposed research that is 1-page or less. This request should be made 2 weeks or more in advance of any pre-proposal deadline. If necessary, or upon request, the concept can be discussed via phone as well. List of Topics Requiring Approval:
- Development of life-cycle/process models to evaluate solid waste
- Evaluating specific applications of pyrolysis/gasification to manage niche/minor waste streams
- Development of specific gasification/pyrolysis techniques or technologies
- Using algae to create biofuels from waste

Pre-proposals will be accepted starting from 15 days prior to the deadline date and up to the close of business (5:00 PM eastern time) on the deadline date. Proposals must be received during this window to be considered. If any of the above dates fall on a weekend, then the deadline will be the Monday following the due date.

Cost sharing is encouraged, but is not required. Because the amount of funding for research is limited, EREF encourages submitting parties to form partnerships with other funding sources (real-dollars or in-kind services). Parties should identify the sources and amounts of external funding in their submissions. It is preferred that real dollars from external sources be managed through EREF rather than going to the research institution directly.

Educational Projects: To be considered for an Educational Project, proposed concepts should be discussed with EREF.

Grants Program:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Submit pre-proposals online here:

If requiring approval prior to submitting a pre-proposal, email a project description to:

Environmental Research and Education Foundation
3301 Benson Drive, Suite 101
Raleigh, North Carolina 27609
P: (919) 861-6876
F: (919) 861-6878

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

USA Territories: American Samoa (USA)   Guam (USA)   Puerto Rico (USA)   Virgin Islands (USA)   Northern Mariana Islands (USA)

USA Compact Free Associations: The Federated States of Micronesia (USA)   Marshall Islands (USA)   Republic of Palau (USA)

Canada: Alberta;   British Columbia;   Manitoba;   New Brunswick;   Newfoundland and Labrador;   Northwest Territories;   Nova Scotia;   Nunavut;   Ontario;   Prince Edward Island;   Quebec;   Saskatchewan;   Yukon;


International country outside of the USA, Israel and Canada.

Suggested Grants:

Fundraising and Publicity Opportunity for USA, Canada, and International Nonprofits for Cult...

Deadline Ongoing

Fundraising opportunity for USA, Canada, and International nonprofit organizations to host a jazz concert held in honor of their organization or cause. Applicants must contact the funding source prior to applying. In addition to funds raised through concert ticket sales

GrantWatch ID#: 123735

Grants to USA and Canada Nonprofits for Projects to Protect Wildlife and Natural Habitats

Deadline 10/01/20

Grants of up to $3,000 to USA and Canada nonprofit organizations for projects to protect wildlife and natural habitats. Funding is intended for campaigns to save specific species and ecosystems. Eligible activities include public policy work, litigation, advocacy, and d

GrantWatch ID#: 129644

Grants to USA and Canada Low-Income Individuals and Families for Financial Assistance

Deadline Ongoing

Grants to USA and Canada individuals and families with low-income for financial assistance. Types of assistance include financial support to offset emergency expenses or to cover the cost of regular monthly bills. Funding is intended for workers and households that are

GrantWatch ID#: 131400

Grants to Alberta ENGOs, Charities and First Nations to Address Critical Environmental Issues

Deadline 10/30/20

Grants of up to $7,500 to Alberta ENGOs, charities, and First Nations to address critical environmental issues. Funding is intended for community projects that strengthen ecosystems. Grants support community-based projects that typically focus on local opportunities for

GrantWatch ID#: 136806

Grants to Alberta Organizations for Projects that Positively Impact the Local Community

Deadline 09/15/20

Grants to Alberta organizations in eligible locations for activities that will benefit local residents. Funding is intended to assist organizations in achieving goals and implementing projects designed to enhance the community. Eligible applicants must be focused on ini

GrantWatch ID#: 136814

Grants and In-Kind Donations to Alberta Registered Charities for Community Benefit Programs

Deadline 11/01/20

Grants and in-kind donations to Alberta registered charities in eligible regions for community benefit programs. The Foundation's goal is to help enrich lives and eradicate social issues while finding long-term solutions to build strong, vibrant, and safe communities. F

GrantWatch ID#: 137649

Grants to Canada Nonprofit Organizations and Individuals for Outdoor Safety Education for Yo...

Deadline Ongoing

Grants ranging from $750 to $2,500 to Canada nonprofit organizations and individuals for programs that promote outdoor safety and encourage youth and outdoor leaders to avoid outdoor risks. Funds may be used to train and educate youth and outdoor leaders on risk avoidan

GrantWatch ID#: 139039

Grants to Alberta Nonprofits for Projects that Benefit the Community

Deadline 09/15/20

Grants to Alberta nonprofit organizations in eligible locations for projects that benefit the community. Focus areas include community recreation, community development, and culture and programming. Funding may also be used for maintenance, capital, and the operations o

GrantWatch ID#: 140180

Grants to USA, Canada, and International IHE Students and Faculty for Research Related to th...

Deadline 10/01/20

Grants of up to $5,000 to USA, Canada, and International individuals for research to benefit the health and safety of children and youth. Funding is intended to support research by graduate students and faculty affiliated with an educational or charitable nonprofit inst

GrantWatch ID#: 140392

Grants to USA and Canada Rescue Groups and Individuals to Assist with Health Care Costs for ...

Deadline Ongoing

Grants of up to $1,000 to USA and Canada animal shelters, rescue agencies, and individuals to assist with costs of urgent medical care for animals that are injured, abused, or neglected. Funding is intended to relieve financial strain, help animals recover, and eventual

GrantWatch ID#: 140837