Marine Debris Research Program

The NOAA Marine Debris Program (MDP), authorized in the Marine Debris Act (33 U.S.C. 1951-1958), provides funding to support eligible organizations to conduct research directly related to marine debris through field, laboratory, and modeling experiments. NOAA MDP invites applications for research that investigates and identifies the critical input pathways for marine debris introduction into the coastal zone (shoreline or nearshore), including evaluation of appropriate simultaneous pathways of riverine transport downstream, surface runoff, stormwater discharge, and wind-driven transport, and degradation and fragmentation of debris during transport. Projects should be original, hypothesis-driven projects that have not previously been addressed to scientific standards. Successful proposals through this solicitation will be funded through cooperative agreements. Funding of up to $2,000,000 is expected to be available for Marine Debris Research grants in Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21). Typical awards will range from $150,000 – $300,000. Funding for this grant competition comes through the NOAA Marine Debris Program as annual or supplemental appropriations to the Office of Response and Restoration, National Ocean Service.

This funding opportunity has a pre-proposal requirement; a Letter of Intent (LOI) must be submitted before full proposals will be invited. LOIs must follow the content and form described in the notice of funding opportunity. LOIs must be submitted via email to (as an attachment) no later than 11:59 p.m. ET, November 5, 2020. If invited per the instructions in this announcement, full proposals must then be submitted through and validated by on or before 11:59 p.m. ET, February 8, 2021.

Funding Agency




75,000 – 350,000

Funding Cycle


Application Deadline

November 5, 2020