Dear Colleague Letter: Funding Opportunities for Engineering Research to Achieve Net-Zero Climate Goals by 2050

Funding Agency:
National Science Foundation

December 28, 2023

Dear Colleagues:

With this Dear Colleague Letter, the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) Directorate for Engineering (ENG) encourages the submission of research and education proposals related to Net-Zero Climate Goals, including innovations to create a Circular Economy.

Bold and decisive actions taking multiple approaches are needed to reach Net-Zero Climate Goals by 2050, as described in The Long-Term Strategy of the United States, Pathways to Net-Zero Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 2050, including advances in clean energy technologies, climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies, circular economy pathways, and innovations to reduce, capture and reuse greenhouse gas emissions. NSF-funded workshops on topics ranging from electrochemical energy storage1 to a zero-carbon power grid2 have identified new research directions that can help meet this global challenge. NSF supports the creation and acceleration of new pathways from exploratory concepts to technological solutions.

The grand challenges of enabling a carbon-neutral energy system can only be met through scientific, engineering, and technological advances. To achieve a carbon-neutral, equitable, and sustainable economy, clean energy must increasingly dominate energy sources. Critical technological advances are needed to maximize access and utilization of renewable energy, enable grid security and storage, and electrify manufacturing, transportation, and chemical processing. Industrial and manufacturing processes in particular are difficult to decarbonize, and their transition is key to meeting net-zero goals while expanding economic prosperity.

NSF and the Engineering Directorate invest in research and education activities toward net-zero goals that align with the needs of the nation and support the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022, White House strategies (such as the Net-Zero Game Changers Initiative), and other policy directives and reports (such as U.S. Innovation to Meet 2050 Climate Goals).

For consideration during fiscal year 2024, proposals to programs without deadlines should be submitted by April 30, 2024; proposals submitted later will be considered for fiscal year 2025.




Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences

External Deadline

April 30, 2024