The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is seeking proposals from states and U.S. territories for federal financial assistance for conservation activities that benefit the nation’s most imperiled species.
The Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund (CESCF), authorized under Section 6 of the Endangered Species Act, provides grants to support voluntary conservation projects for listed species and species that are candidates for listing. For fiscal year 2015, the President’s budget requests $50 million in grant funding for the CESCF to be derived from the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which uses part of the revenue from offshore oil and gas leasing in federal waters to conserve irreplaceable lands throughout the nation.
The President has proposed permanent full funding for the LWCF, which has helped pay for more than 40,000 recreational and other conservation projects across the country in its 50-year history. Congress has appropriated full funding only once before.
The Service is seeking proposals in three categories: Recovery Land Acquisition Grants, which provide funds for the acquisition of habitat in support of approved and draft species recovery plans; Habitat Conservation Planning Assistance Grants, which provide funds to support the development of Habitat Conservation Plans (HCPs) that protect habitat for listed species while providing for economic growth and development; and HCP Land Acquisition Grants, which provide funds to acquire habitat for listed species associated with approved HCPs.
To receive a CESCF grant, a state or territory must have a current cooperative agreement with the Secretary of the Interior and contribute at least 25 percent of the total project cost, or 10 percent when two or more states or territories undertake a joint project. Proposals must be submitted electronically through grants.gov or to the appropriate Service regional offices by January 23, 2015.
For more information and application requirements, contact: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Branch of Recovery and State Grants, 5275 Leesburg Pike MS: ES, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803; tel: 703-358-2171. The CESCF is number 15.615 in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance.
Learn more about the grants, including details of grants awarded in FY 2014, at www.fws.gov/endangered/grants.