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Lake Erie Protection Fund Grants Available through Ohio Lake Erie Commission

The Ohio Lake Erie Commission is accepting proposals until April 17, 2023, for Lake Erie Protection Fund grants for coastal wetlands and invasive species data that would be used in the next Lake Erie Quality Index (LEQI). Grants of up to $50,000 will be considered during the grant cycle. 

The LEQI was last issued in 2022 by the Ohio Lake Erie Commission; the Index compiles data generated by state agencies in their work to protect, enhance, and improve Ohio’s Great Lake for the benefit of all Ohioans and visitors. It is updated about every five years. 

Applicants selected will be announced at the Ohio Lake Erie Commission meeting on June 14, 2023. Proposals will need to address the priorities for LEQI metrics on coastal wetlands and invasive species as outlined in the request for proposals. The request for proposals, application materials, and guidance for the Lake Erie Protection Fund Grant are available on the Commission website

The Ohio Lake Erie Commission administers the Lake Erie Protection Fund. The fund was established to finance research and on-the-ground projects aimed at protecting, preserving, and restoring Lake Erie and its watershed, and with priorities set forth through the Lake Erie Protection and Restoration Plan. 

The fund is supported through tax-deductible donations online via PayPal, by check, or through the purchase of a Lake Erie license plate featuring the Marblehead Lighthouse, Toledo Harbor Lighthouse, or Lake Erie life preserver. More than $12 million has been awarded from the fund to more than 400 projects since 1993. 

The Ohio Lake Erie Commission was established for the purpose of preserving Lake Erie’s natural resources, protecting the quality of its waters and ecosystem, and promoting economic development in the region. The director of Ohio Environmental Protection Agency serves as the Commission’s chairperson. Additional members include the directors of the state departments of Transportation, Natural Resources, Health, Development and Agriculture and seven additional members of the public appointed by the Governor.