We highly recommend all interested parties contact our grant team before you begin the application process to ensure fit. You can reach the grants team by emailing [email protected] or by calling 1-800-465-2147.

About Our Grant Program

Alberta Ecotrust funds the people and projects working on Alberta’s most pressing environmental issues. We accomplish this primarily by investing in Alberta environmental non-governmental organizations to more effectively deliver programs, projects, and results that advance their environmental missions within our issue priorities.

Alberta Ecotrust presently has four grant streams: Community Grants, Major Projects, the EcoCity Edmonton Grant Program, and the CitiesIPCC Legacy Research Grant Program. Please review the deadlines for each of these grants in 2020 and mark your calendar appropriately. For Major Projects and Community Grants, all of the application information, including eligibility, guidelines, and the online application portal are posted on this page.

Community Grants

Community grants support community-based projects that typically focus on local opportunities for change through stewardship and action. These projects must be completed in one year. Maximum grant amount is $7,500.

Major Grants

This program is designed to support more comprehensive projects that have the potential to result in substantial environmental benefit. The application process is more comprehensive and will be undertaken in two parts. These projects must be completed within a year. Maximum grant is $30,000.


Spring Grants – Major Projects and Community Grants

Major Projects Application Portal Open: March 2, 2020

Major Projects Letter of Intent Deadline: March 31, 2020

Community Grants Application Portal Open: April 20, 2020

Community Grants Application Deadline: May 20, 2020

Decision-making: Early June, 2020

EcoCity Edmonton Grants

Application Portal Open – March 16, 2020

Application Deadline – April 17, 2020

Decision-making: Mid-May, 2020

CitiesIPCC Legacy Research Grants

Application Portal Open – May 1, 2020

Application Deadline – June 15, 2020

Decision-making: Mid-July, 2020

Fall Grants – Major Projects and Community Grants

Major Projects Application Portal Open: August 10, 2020

Major Projects Letter of Intent Deadline: September 11, 2020

Community Grants Application Portal Open: October 1, 2020

Community Grants Application Deadline: October 30, 2020

Decision-making: Mid-November, 2020


Please note:  Alberta Ecotrust funds environmental projects in the province of Alberta only.  We do not fund projects in other provinces or countries. National  organizations are eligible to apply if the project is being undertaken in Alberta and includes Alberta partners.

If you have any questions, please contact our Grants Team.

Organizations Eligible for Funding

Alberta Ecotrust grants enable Alberta ENGOs to more effectively deliver programs, projects and results that advance their environmental missions within our issue priorities.

  • ο Public interest charities operating in Alberta whose vision and mission primarily focus on protecting the environment
  • ο Qualified First Nations

Organizations Not Eligible For Funding

The following organizations are not eligible to receive funding from Alberta Ecotrust:

  • ο Private sector organizations, for-profit businesses
  • ο Business associations
  • ο Educational institutions
  • ο Municipal, provincial/territorial and federal governments
  • ο Government agencies
  • ο For-profit cooperatives
  • ο Individuals
  • ο Political parties

Projects Eligible for Funding

The following criteria must be met to be eligible for funding:

  • ο Project must take place in Alberta
  • ο Address one or more of our environmental priorities
  • ο Applicants must provide additional 25% of project funding as a matching contribution
  • ο Matching contribution can be either cash or in-kind
  • ο Project end date is a maximum of 12 months after the start date<

Please note the following activities will not be eligible for funding:

  • ο Conferences
  • ο Projects mandated by any order of government
  • ο Political lobbying
  • ο Litigation

Alberta Ecotrust recognizes that advocacy is an important function of the voluntary sector and supports activities focused on the good of the public and commons. However, we will not support or fund an initiative that targets or impugns the reputation of any individual, organization, or sector.


The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has recently made changes to the rules governing the political activities of charities. The CRA has lifted the quantitative limits specified in the Income Tax Act that a charity can only devote a limited portion of its resources (generally, about 10%) to non-partisan political activities that are ancillary and incidental to its charitable purposes. This is good news for charities and allows them to participate more fully in the democratic process of contributing to and improving public policy.


However, the rules prohibiting charitable organizations from devoting any part of their resources to the direct or indirect support of, or opposition to, a political party or candidate for public office remain in effect. Like all registered charities, Alberta Ecotrust Foundation is subject to these restrictions. This includes any political activity we undertake ourselves directly, or those activities we indirectly support by providing grants. As such, any projects that undertake this type of activity will be ineligible for an Alberta Ecotrust grant.


For more information, please read the Canada Revenue Agency guidance document CG-027 – Public policy dialogue and development activities by charities (Guidance), found here.

Eligible Costs

Grant funds can be used for any costs deemed reasonable and directly related to the project. This includes:

  • ο Salaries
  • ο Contractor wages
  • ο Travel and accommodations
  • ο Existing programs that address our three environmental priorities
  • ο Publications
  • ο Website development
  • ο Supplies and materials
  • ο Portion of rent, telephone, etc.
  • ο Project-specific training

*Project start dates are often 2 months after the application deadline (i.e June 15 or December 15). Costs incurred before your project start date are not eligible for funding.


Note:  Alberta Ecotrust funds environmental projects in the province of Alberta only.  We do not fund projects in other provinces or countries.

Please read these application guidelines carefully before completing your application. Keep in mind these are general guidelines for our grants program as a whole.

Before starting your application, we strongly encourage you to contact our Grants Team – at least 5 days before the grant deadline – for some feedback on your idea. We can often provide additional context, contacts and information that will improve your application!

The following headings provide context and additional information regarding our expectations for your proposal. Please review each area carefully as they reflect the information we are looking for in your proposals. Feel free to contact our grant staff if you have further questions:  403-209-2245, 1-800-465-2147 (outside of Calgary) or [email protected].

Make sure you review all the criteria and guidelines before you apply. If in doubt, please don’t hesitate to contact us. It is the best way to make sure your proposal is relevant and eligible for funding.

Issue Priorities

All projects must align with at least one of our environmental priorities. If you are in doubt, please contact us before proceeding with your application.

1)    Water –  Protection and conservation of water and/or the maintenance of water quality

2)    Land Use – Protection or enhancement of ecological function of native and developed landscapes, including biodiversity, wildlife habitat and land use management.

3)   Climate Change  – Protection of the atmosphere, greenhouse gas and emissions reductions, and energy conservation


Alberta Ecotrust will assess all grant proposals for impact based on the following criteria:

  • ο Project activities: Activities are clearly outlined, target audiences identified, and measureable outcomes defined
  • ο Evaluation strategy and success indicators: Success can be measured over time, metrics and indicators are appropriate, and applicant demonstrates capacity to utilize evaluative data
  • ο Project results: Long-term goals and the path to achieve them is clearly articulated, along with the anticipated change

Likelihood of Success

Alberta Ecotrust will assess all grant proposals for likelihood of success based on the following criteria:

  • ο Present situation: A specific environmental situation or issue is clearly defined, and proposal demonstrates a strong understanding of the stated need
  • ο Strength of strategy: Proposal clearly identifies a chosen strategy (see LEAP framework below) and how this strategy will lead to the change they are trying to achieve
  • ο Organizational capacity and mission: Project aligns with organization’s mission, and organization is well positioned to address this specific situation


Scoring Rubric

All applications to the Alberta Ecotrust are reviewed by our Grant Committee Members using an Application Scorecard. Review this Scorecard and the success criteria in developing your application. Make sure your application makes sense! Ask another person to review your draft application using the Scorecard.

Application Checklist

  • ο You have contacted us to discuss your project
  • ο Your project addresses either our Water, Land Use or Climate Change priority
  • ο Your organization is eligible to apply
  • ο You have networked with those that are doing similar work to explore opportunities to collaborate
  • ο Your have reviewed our criteria and reviewed the Application Scorecard
  • ο You have selected a short, simple and descriptive title for the project that makes sense to others
  • ο Your purpose is clear and the proposal is free of jargon, abbreviations, etc.
  • ο You have ensured that all calculations in your budget are accurate and clearly identified all current and potential funding sources and expenses


We are accepting Letters of Intent for Major Projects from August 10 to September 11, 2020.

NOTE: You may notice the application portal looks a bit different than in previous years. This is because we have recently moved to new Grantmaking software. As a result of this move you will need to create a new profile, even if you have applied for an Alberta Ecotrust grant before.

If you have any questions or problems accessing our system please contact our grant staff via email at [email protected], or by calling 403-209-2245 or 1-800-465-2147 outside of Calgary.



If you would like to access an application previously submitted to Alberta Ecotrust you can do so through our old application portal below. If you have an active grant that requires reporting our grant staff should have been in contact with you to discuss the best option for submitting your report. If you haven’t heard from us or are unsure of the process please reach out directly to Simon Irving at [email protected] or 403-209-2245 ext. 207.




The City of Edmonton, with support from Alberta Ecotrust and the Edmonton Community Foundation, are partnering to deliver grants to help support the City’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 35% (below 2005 levels) by 2035.

Edmontonians have an important role in reducing our contribution to climate change and preparing locally for future climactic changes and events. These grants, available to non-profits, community leagues, schools and charities, will invest in citizen-led urban solutions to climate change.

Through EcoCity Edmonton, you can learn about Edmonton’s environmental vision, find inspiration to take action in your community, and get a grant to help you get your idea off the ground.



The City of Edmonton, with support from Alberta Ecotrust, are partnering to deliver research grants to help advance knowledge about how Edmonton can become an energy sustainable and climate resilient city.

Research projects must align with the City of Edmonton’s Energy Transition Strategy and the Climate Resilient Edmonton – Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan. Research projects should also align with the Global Research and Action Agenda on Cities and Climate Change Science which includes the topics of Urban Planning and Design, Built and Blue / Green Infrastructure, Sustainable Consumption and Production, Finance, Uncertainty, and Informality.

Proposals must align with one or more of these three areas of focus:
● Energy Transition;
● Climate Change Adaptation & Resilience; and/or
● Citizen Science (to support Energy Transition and Climate Change Adaptation & Resilience).



Communities are not just the places in which we live. Communities are also the groups of people that we gather with to share interests, passions, or purpose.  Alberta Ecotrust is excited to be collaborating with Energy Efficiency Alberta and supporting diverse communities in Alberta to engage in energy efficient actions in the places they work, live and play.

The Energy Efficiency Education Grant Program provides funding to organizations to help Albertans build awareness, skills and capacity to take action on energy efficiency and renewable energy. For a project to be eligible, it should create a measurable impact and align with one or more of the following program objectives:

  1. Leverage education related to enhancing energy efficiency
  2. Build capacity in communities to deliver GHG reductions
  3. Reduce GHG emissions in a measurable way that leverages learning

Please note: Applications to the Energy Efficiency Education Grant Program are now closed.