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National Estuary Program (NEP) Competitive Fund

The NEP Coastal Watersheds Grant Program is a national competitive grant program designed to support projects that address urgent and challenging issues threatening the well-being of coastal and estuarine areas within "estuaries of national significance" in the National Estuary Program - which includes the CHNEP area. To be eligible, projects in the CHNEP area must support the implementation of the CHNEP's Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (with priority to projects addressing harmful algae blooms, habitat loss and coastal erosion/flooding) and must be completed in a 2-year timeframe. Each subaward will range between $75,000 and $250,000, and requires 33% match - with three to ten total subawards being made.

The 2021 Request for Proposals is now underway, with Letters of Intent being accepted April 19 - June 7, 2021. Please coordinate with the CHNEP right away if you would like to submit a Letter of Intentin order to allow us to provide you a required NEP Acknowledgement Letter (see instructions below). 

Applications are stronger if they show that the project will be undertaken with collaboration with the CHNEP, and the CHNEP may even be able to do the procurement of services and project management to assist implementing the proposed project.  Additionally, CHNEP can make data or reports publicly available through the CHNEP Water Atlas

Instructions for requesting an Acknowledgement Letter from CHNEP

for NEP Competitive Fund Coastal Watershed Grant Proposal Submission

To help us make informed acknowledgement of your application, please provide the following to Research & Outreach Manager, Nicole Iadevaia ( as soon as possible (no later than June 1, 2021).  We will respond with a letter of acknowledgement, which you can include with your LOI/full proposal submission.


  1. Applicant Information


Contact name, title:

Contact email address:

  1. Project Description

    1. Title

    2. Objective

    3. Geographic Area

      1. Provide a map of project area. 

      2. Does the proposed project fall within the planning area of CHNEP? (A map of the NEP boundaries can be found at:

If Yes, go to Section 3.

If No, skip to Section 4.


3.  For projects within CHNEP area (*preferred)

  1. Indicate how the proposed project will advance the CHNEP CCMP - be as specific as possible including referencing CCMP goals, objectives and/or priority actions. 

  2. List any other State or locally approved community-based watershed management plan referenced in your project description


4.  For projects outside CHNEP area

  1. Identify the State or locally approved community-based watershed management plan referenced for your project. 

  2. Indicate how the proposed project may help advance the CHNEP CCMP, for example by describing the transferability of proposed methods or project results.

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