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Environmental Education Grants

Each year, Pennsylvania invests in its schools, county conservation districts, and other nonprofit organizations to improve environmental awareness among students and adults alike.

The Environmental Education Grant Program was established by the Environmental Education Act of 1993, which mandates that five percent of all pollution fines and penalties collected annually by the Department of Environmental Protection be set aside for environmental education. Since the inception of the environmental education grant program, DEP has awarded more than $12 million in grants to support environmental education efforts throughout Pennsylvania.

Administered through DEP, the funds are used for projects ranging from creative, hands-on lessons for students, teacher training programs, and outdoor learning resources to conservation education for adults.

Wildlands Conservancy's "Climate Change in Our Watershed" middle school program, funded with an Environmental Education Grant

2021 Environmental Education Grants Awarded

DEP has awarded $459,823 in 2021 Environmental Education Grants to 51 innovative formal and nonformal environmental education projects. Awarded projects address grant program priorities and represent a reasonable statewide distribution of Environmental Education Funds.

Click here to access the 2021 EE Grant award announcement.

EE Grants Program Resources


The 2021 EE Grants Program application period begins September 11, 2020. Application deadline is December 11, 2020

Applications must be submitted online. Click here to apply.

Click here for online application instructions.

Learn More

2021 Environmental Education Grants Program Manual (PDF)

Applicants must complete these forms:

2021 EE Grants Program Webinar

Submit your best application possible! A 2021 EE Grants Program Webinar was held on October 14 at 1:00 pm.

2021 EE Grant Program Project Time Period

Awarded projects may begin on July 1, 2021, and must end by June 30, 2022. No time extensions will be provided. Expenses incurred outside of the Project Time period are ineligible for grant funds.

Project Audiences

Projects may deliver both formal (K-12) and non-formal education programs targeting any audience, including, but not limited to, youth, teachers, municipal officials, farmers, developers, site designers, businesses, and homeowners or other community residents. Environmental Justice Areas, including people who live and work within the communities, are considered priority audiences.

Environmental Education Grant Program Priorities

Climate Change

Education projects to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and negative impacts of climate change including floods, changes to groundwater, pests, disease, agricultural disruptions, and potential threats to human health.


Education programs promoting effective ways to reduce non-point source and source water pollution to improve water quality.

Environmental Justice

Education programs designed to empower and engage residents and officials of Environmental Justice areas (as defined by the U.S. Census) in developing meaningful solutions that address local environmental issues and public health concerns.

Grant Award Amounts

The Department of Environmental Protection's Environmental Education Grants Program provides funding for education projects that foster an understanding of natural world functions and cultivate critical thinking and actions that promote environmental protection and sustainable resource management.  Two types of awards are available for projects addressing the Environmental Education Grants Program Priorities:

Mini Grants of up to $3,000 may be awarded for local (school, county, municipality or other defined area) environmental education projects. Mini-grants are strongly encouraged, but not required, to form project partnerships and include a project match (Cash or In-Kind).

General Grants: - General grants are offered at two funding levels:

General Grants (Level I): From $3,001 up to $20,000 may be awarded for implementation of large-scale, regional or statewide environmental education projects.

General Grants (Level II): From $20,001 to $85,000 may be awarded for non-formal environmental education programs designed to widely* engage teachers and youth at the county, state and national levels.  (*Teachers and students from at least 60 Pennsylvania counties must directly participate in the project). Additionally, the project must demonstrate that at least 30% of program participants are community members of an Environmental Justice Area.

All General Grants require a 20% Match (Cash or In-Kind) and Project Partners (Completed and signed Partner forms are required to be submitted with the application)

EE Grant Recipients: Reporting Forms 

Additional EE Grant Opportunities

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Grants

Chesapeake B-WET is a competitive grant program that supports existing, high-quality environmental education programs and fosters the growth of new, innovative programs. It encourages capacity building and partnership development for environmental education programs throughout the entire Chesapeake Bay watershed. NOAA's Chesapeake Bay Watershed Education and Training grant program—known as Chesapeake B-WET—supports hands-on watershed education to students and teachers to foster stewardship of the Bay.