About the Fund
The Puget Sound Stewardship and Mitigation Fund was created by a record legal settlement between the Puget Soundkeeper Alliance (Soundkeeper) and Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway, and has since been supplemented by several other pollution mitigation payments including SSA Terminals, Whitley Evergreen, Rainier Petroleum Corporation and Louis Dreyfus Company Washington LLC. More recently we received mitigation funds from Alaskan Copper Company, and another record settlement payment from BNSF, which involved Soundkeeper numerous other waterkeepers and the Sierra Club. The Fund’s goal is to mitigate past pollution runoff by supporting community-based efforts to protect or improve the water quality of Puget Sound. Since inception in 2012, over $3 million in grants have been awarded for projects in Puget Sound related to conservation, restoration, citizen science, environmental justice, shoreline access and environmental education.
The Puget Soundkeeper Alliance’s Clean Water Act enforcement program enforces federal water quality laws against serious violators. Lawsuits are brought on behalf of Soundkeeper’s citizen members, each of whom has a legal right to swimmable and fishable waterways. In bringing pollution-related lawsuits, Soundkeeper’s goal is to achieve negotiated settlements that bring polluters into compliance with the law and the permitting system. Settlement funds are then donated to local environmental groups to help them repair damage done to the Sound. The $1.5 million BNSF Balmer Yard settlement which launched the Puget Sound Stewardship and Mitigation Fund is one of the largest ever in a citizen enforcement action involving stormwater discharges. Click here to read more about how citizen enforcement of the Clean Water Act created this funding opportunity.
- Applications are due March 15, 2019. The application process will open in late January.
- Grant awards will be announced at the end of April 2019.
- Applications are due September 20, 2019.
- Grant awards will be announced November 2019.
Eligibility and Priorities
The Puget Sound Stewardship and Mitigation Fund supports projects designed to benefit the water quality of Puget Sound and/or the Salish Sea, and their ecosystems. Due to funding fluctuations, the specific watersheds eligible for grants vary. This year, we particularly encourage proposals that will benefit water quality in the following areas:
- Eastern shore of Puget Sound from Mt. Vernon to the Canadian border, including the eastern part of the Salish Sea.
- The waters of central Puget Sound, especially Elliott Bay and the Duwamish River Watershed.
- Tributaries north of Bellingham, including Nooksack River and Lumni River watershed.
Please understand that this funding process is very competitive, and most grants are awarded to well-established organizations with a strong track record of community-based water quality stewardship. Click here for more on eligibility and priorities.
How To Apply
Grants will be awarded up to a maximum amount of $25,000. In addition to larger organizations, we’ve specifically reserved some of the grant funds for smaller grassroots organizations and we encourage proposals from local, volunteer-based groups. Groups of any size are eligible to apply. If your organization has an annual budget of $100,000 or less, we encourage you to apply for a grant of $10,000 or less.
Please check all eligibility requirements before starting the online application. Click here to read the instructions for applications and how to use our online system.
Please sign up here to receive notifications of future grant opportunities.
GRANT REPORTING INSTRUCTIONS
If your group is awarded a grant, you must provide a final grant report within one year of receiving the money, or before your group can receive additional funding. Click here for the full grant reporting instructions.
Funding Board Members
The Puget Sound Stewardship and Mitigation Fund is advised by a local funding board of individuals with deep knowledge of Puget Sound issues. Click here to read the member bios.
For More Information
Tim Little, Executive Director
Email: tlittle[AT]rosefdn.org (please replace AT with @)