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Oceans Management Funding Opportunities

Project application guide

The Government of Canada is committed to conserving 25% of Canada’s oceans by 2025, working towards 30% by 2030. We are working closely with provincial, territorial, and Indigenous governments, and consulting with marine stakeholders, to conserve and protect our oceans for generations to come, while enabling our coastal communities to thrive.

The Oceans Management Contribution Program provides funding opportunities to eligible applicants to support marine conservation initiatives in the community, with an emphasis on outreach, monitoring and stewardship, and capacity building initiatives.

On this page:

Please take your time and carefully read the following sections in this guide before completing your application:

Program information

1. Purpose

This guide is meant to help applicants complete and submit their applications to the Oceans Management Contribution Program by February 11, 2022.

2. Application period

The call for proposals is open from December 15, 2021 and closes on February 11, 2022 at 6 pm (EST).

3. Program objectives

The Government of Canada is taking concrete action to protect, conserve and manage Canada’s marine environment by investing in nature-based solutions, such as Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and Other Effective area-based Conservation Measures (OECMs). In response to the growth of international scientific research about the measures needed to address biodiversity loss and global climate change, we are committed to increasing the conservation of Canada’s oceans to 25% by 2025, working towards 30% by 2030.

Under Budget 2021, the Government of Canada made an historic investment to protect the health of our oceans, including close to $1 billion in funding over 5 years to reach ambitious marine conservation targets.

The strategy for implementing the marine conservation targets initiative builds on lessons learned from meeting Canada’s original target of 10% protection of marine and coastal areas by 2020. Previous efforts have demonstrated that achieving marine conservation within Canada requires a multi-pronged approach that is based on best available information and provides opportunity for meaningful engagement of partners and stakeholders.

In order to achieve these new marine conservation targets, progress will be advanced in 5 key areas:

  1. effective management
    manage existing MPAs and OECMs to ensure they are effective in achieving their conservation objectives
  2. new site establishment
    establish new MPAs and OECMs to meet the 25% target by 2025
  3. collaboration
    continue to build upon and foster meaningful partnerships with provincial, territorial and Indigenous governments and local communities, to advance effective ocean planning and conservation activities
  4. marine spatial planning
    advance marine conservation within the broader context of marine spatial planning and Canada’s Blue Economy Strategy, which is still in development, to help enable ambitious marine conservation objectives while also allowing for sustainable growth in our ocean sectors as part of the development of a resilient blue economy
  5. international advocacy
    continue to take a leadership role along with like-minded countries to advocate for conserving 30% of the world’s oceans by 2030

In order to support the achievement of Canada’s Marine Conservation Targets, this funding program places priority on funding projects that fall under the following categories:

4. Eligible recipients

The following categories of recipients are eligible to apply:

5. Starting date of the proposed project

DFO financial contributions may never be used by a funded organization to pay or cover costs incurred before a project has officially begun. In general, a project begins and is permitted to incur expenses once a contribution agreement has been signed by both DFO and the funded organization.

It will take some time (about 12 weeks) for DFO to both complete its review of a proposed project and to negotiate the terms of a contribution agreement with your organization. The starting date of the proposed project must take into account the timing of activities that would be done if the proposed project was approved for funding. This also means that the budget of the proposed project must only include costs that would be incurred no less than at least 12 weeks from the date the application is submitted.

Multi-Year funding may be considered based on the project proposed.

6. Eligible project activities

Funding will be made available under the following categories (described under Program objectives):

7. Expected results

Your project must address the program's objective to:

8. Eligible expenditures

The following categories of eligible expenditures are acceptable:

9. Project selection and funding decisions

Fisheries and Oceans will review proposals as submitted and does not expect to contact applicants for further information. It is your responsibility to provide clear, comprehensive and accurate information.

Fisheries and Oceans will assess all applications received by the deadline. We will notify all applicants of the final decisions. Decisions are final; there is no appeal process.

How to apply

Eligible recipients interested in being considered for financial support are required to submit a proposal indicating to which funding stream they are applying using the provided application form.

For help with this form, refer to the project application guide, annex A to the Application form

Please submit your completed application to on or before the application deadline February 11, 2022 at 6PM (EST).

Additional funding opportunities will be posted to this website when available.

Contact us

For questions about these funding opportunities or more help with the form, contact:

Chantal Gregoire
(She/her | elle/la)
Manager, Grants & Contributions and Reporting/Gestionnaire des subventions et contributions et rapports
Marine Planning and Conservation Directorate/Direction de la Planification et de la conservation marines
Fisheries and Oceans Canada | Pêches et Océans Canada
200 Kent, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0E6
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