Environmental Damages Fund
The Environmental Damages Fund (EDF) is a specified purpose account administered by Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) to direct funds received from fines, court orders and voluntary payments to priority projects that will benefit Canada’s natural environment.
For examples of previously funded projects, see the EDF project map.
The purpose of the EDF is to fund projects that restore damage to the natural environment and support wildlife conservation, in a cost-effective way.
Fines directed to the EDF are used to fund projects that focus on the following four categories in order of priority:
- environmental quality improvement
- research and development
- education and awareness
Projects must be undertaken within Canadian provinces and territories. Fund Use Requirements accompany each available funding amount and may include prioritized geographic regions.
Eligible applicants are not-for profit organizations and may include:
- non-governmental organizations (e.g. environmental community groups)
- universities and academic institutions
- Indigenous organizations
- provincial, territorial and municipal governments
Individuals, businesses, and/or other federal departments or agencies are not eligible to apply for funding, but are encouraged to partner with eligible applicants. Offenders that have been fined or made monetary payments directed to the EDF are not eligible to apply or to partner with eligible groups for fines or monetary payments they have made that were directed to the EDF.
Priority is given to projects that restore the natural environment and conserve wildlife, followed by:
- environmental quality improvement initiatives
- research and development on environmental restoration and improvement
- education and awareness on issues affecting the health of the natural environment
There is no maximum project duration; however, the average EDF project typically does not exceed five years.
To be eligible for funding through the EDF, projects must meet the following criteria:
- address one or more of EDF’s four priority areas noted above
- satisfy all Fund Use Requirements as listed on the EDF Available Funds page
- are scientifically sound and technically feasible
- are cost-effective in achieving goals, objectives and results
- can measure results using EDF performance indicators
- show that the environment will benefit from the project
- demonstrate that the applicant possesses or has access to necessary partnership, experience, knowledge and skills required to undertake the project
- involves individuals and communities with local experience and knowledge
While matching funds are not required, evidence of other funding sources such as matching contributions and the respective amounts, or demonstration of the applicant’s ability to raise funds from sources other than the federal government, will be considered an asset at the proposal evaluation stage.
Ineligible projects and activities include:
- those activities required by law and/or mandated by other levels of government
- containment and clean-up of environmental spills
- restoration of contaminated sites
- infrastructure, particularly related to municipal, provincial and federal government program areas
- lobbying or advocacy activities
- recreation and tourism projects or beautification initiatives
- preparation of formal curriculum materials
- core organization functions and activities such as meetings, maintenance and administration; however, project-specific administrative support is eligible
- annual or regular organization events/campaigns
- expenses to attend general conferences and workshops (project specific conferences and workshops are eligible)
- projects and activities underway
- continuation of projects previously funded by the EDF
- projects outside of Canada
- bursaries or cash incentives
Please note that this is not a comprehensive list. If you are unsure about any of the examples listed above or the eligibility of your project and activities, please email the ECCC office in your region.
EDF Calls for Proposals are competitive processes; applications must include all details of the project and expected results. The level of detail provided must support the complexity of the project.
In addition, the project must include at least one of the EDF’s performance indicators and a clear target value for each chosen indicator.
Eligible project costs
Costs related to the following types of expenses are eligible under the EDF program:
- human resource costs, including salaries and benefits
- travel costs not to exceed National Joint Council rates
- material and supplies costs
- printing and production costs
- communications and distribution costs
- equipment rental or purchase
- vehicle rentals and operational costs
- translation costs
- liability insurance costs that are directly attributed to carrying out the project
- overhead and/or administrative costs and rent that is directly attributed to carrying out the project (20% or less)
- any GST/HST that is not reimbursable by Revenue Canada and any PST not reimbursable by the provinces
Please refer to the National Joint Council’s website for your provincial/territorial kilometric rates.
The application submission period for funding is now closed. This website will be updated when funding is available for application.
Available funding varies according to the number of court awards and voluntary contributions directed to the EDF. In its sentencing decision, the court may make recommendations about how the fund should be used, including the recipient, location and scope of a project. This information is considered in the assessment of the fine and in the development of the Fund Use Requirement. Details on available funds and Fund Use Requirements can be found on the available funds page and in the Grants and Contributions Enterprise Management System (GCEMS).
Applying for funding
Project proposals are accepted through GCEMS.
Visit the GCEMS application instructions page for technical assistance documents, tutorials, and support throughout your application preparation.
Evaluation of applications
Your application will be reviewed to verify eligibility and to assess technical and scientific merit. All project proposals are subject to the same evaluation criteria.
If your project application is approved in principle, you will be sent a notification letter and will be contacted by an ECCC Project Manager to negotiate a funding agreement that outlines the terms and conditions of the funding. Federal Members of Parliament and/or their teams may be advised about the approval in principle of a project and may be provided with information provided in your application including applicant’s name, project title, project description, project location, funding amounts, and contact information.
If your application is not approved, you will also be informed of this decision in writing.
New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island
45 Alderney Drive
16th Floor, Queen Square
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia B2Y 2N6
801-1550, avenue D'Estimauville
Quebec, Quebec G1J 0C3
4905 Dufferin Street
Toronto, Ontario M3H 5T4
Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut
510-234 Donald Street
Winnipeg, Manitoba R3C 1M8
British Columbia and Yukon
#201-401 Burrard Street
Vancouver, British Columbia V6C 3S5
General inquiries may also be forwarded to the National EDF Office.
National EDF Office
45 Alderney Drive
16th Floor, Queen Square
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia B2Y 2N6
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