Funding Opportunity: Environmental System Science

October 2023

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science’s Biological and Environmental Research (BER) program hereby announces its interest in receiving applications for research in Environmental System Science (ESS).

The ESS program aims to advance an integrated, robust, and scale-aware predictive understanding of terrestrial systems and their interdependent microbial, biogeochemical, ecological, hydrological, and physical processes. To support this goal, the program uses a systems approach to develop an integrative framework that elucidates the complex processes and controls on the structure, function, feedbacks, and dynamics of terrestrial systems, spanning molecular to global scales and extending from the bedrock through the soil, rhizosphere, and vegetation to the atmosphere. The ESS program scope advances foundational process knowledge with an emphasis on understudied ecosystems.

This funding opportunity announcement (FOA) will consider applications that focus on measurements, experiments, field data, modeling, and synthesis to provide improved understanding and representation of ecosystems and watersheds in ways that advance the sophistication and capabilities of models that span from individual processes to Earth-system scales.

This FOA will encompass 3 Science Research Areas:

  1. Plant-microbe interactions in the rhizosphere.
  2. Consequences of large-scale shifts in vegetation composition.
  3. Synthesis studies focusing on legacy effects or the carbon cycle and disturbance.


All types of applicants are eligible to apply, except nonprofit organizations described in section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 that engaged in lobbying activities after December 31, 1995. DOE/National Nuclear Security Administration national laboratories are neither eligible to submit applications nor to be proposed as subrecipients under another organization’s application.

  • Deadline for Pre-applications (required): November 29, 2023; 5:00 pm Eastern time
  • Deadline for Proposals: February 29, 2024; 11:59 pm Eastern time

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