A database for communities pursuing federal funding and/or technical assistance for nature-based solutions

As natural hazards, like flooding and drought, grow in intensity and frequency each year, communities face the growing pressure to develop and implement plans that protect vulnerable communities, infrastructure, natural habitats, and farmland. Nature-based solutions offer a cost-effective, long-term approach to addressing environmental issues, like polluted water, eroded soils, or degraded habitats, while simultaneously considering social and economic outcomes. While there are many funding sources for nature-based practices, this database focuses on federal funding and technical assistance programs. 

One of the goals of this database is to raise awareness of the number of federal programs available for nature-based project assistance, particularly those that may not immediately be considered or are lesser known. With passage of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL), also known as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, in 2021 and the Inflation Reduction Act in 2022, there was a significant influx of federal funding for nature-based projects; the BIL and IRA both supplemented current programs and created new ones to address issues like climate change and environmental justice. This database captures both new and supplemented programs and will be regularly updated to reflect the current federal funding landscape. Unique to the database is its filter functions, which allows users to search for programs that best meet their needs based on program purpose, recipient eligibility, support type, cost-share requirements, and federal agency. 

This resource originated with an eye toward the needs of communities in the mainstem Mississippi River States; however, this database is applicable and relevant nationwide for any communities seeking resources to support nature-based solutions across sectors. We hope that it will be a tool for anyone working to navigate the complex federal funding landscape, and that it will assist communities in identifying funding for technical assistance and capacity building needs. 

The site will be updated regularly; if you see an error or omission, please contact Mahtaab Bagherzadeh at BagherzadehM@nwf.org.

This database was made possible thanks to support from the Walton Family Foundation.

The Team

  • Mahtaab Bagherzadeh, Senior Program Manager, Mississippi River 
  • Jessie Ritter, Associate Vice President, Water Resources and Coastal Policy 
  • Ilana Rubin, Program Manager, Water Resources & Water Protection Network
  • Ben Knuth, Agriculture Policy Specialist 
  • Emily Donahoe, Policy Specialist, Resilient Coasts and Floodplains
  • Glenn Watkins, Senior Policy Specialist, Water Resources

About NWF

The National Wildlife Federation, America’s largest and most trusted conservation organization, works across the country to unite Americans from all walks of life in giving wildlife a voice. We’ve been on the front lines for wildlife since 1936, fighting for the conservation values that are woven into the fabric of our nation’s collective heritage. Read more about NWF here.