The purpose of this RFP, designated RFP-III, is to support continuity of observations and sampling and for initiation of emergent, e.g., time sensitive, observations and sampling during July 1, 2011 to September 30, 2011. Up to two additional months of support are available for ancillary work, i.e., to catalogue the observations and samples and prepare them for availability to the wider community. RFP-III is to sustain or initiate critical observations and sampling related to the DWH oil spill. RFP-III is intended to fill a funding gap in critical data acquisition. All costs must be encumbered by November 30, 2011, and costs encumbered after that date will not be paid. The level of funding for each RFP-III project is expected to be different, concomitant with the requirements of the continuing and emergent observations and sampling to be performed.
The total funds available for distribution through RFP-III are up to $1.5 million. Funding for each award is estimated to be $50,000 (minimum) and $300,000 (maximum) for five months (maximum).
RFP-III will involve accelerated proposal submission, review, and grant allocation procedures. No letter of intent was required.
The deadline to submit a proposal for RFP-III was June 17, 2011 at 9:00 p.m. EDT. Awards were announced on June 30, 2011.
The work performed under RFP-III shall contribute to the major research themes to be addressed in RFP-I. These are:
1. Physical distribution, dispersion, and dilution of petroleum (oil and gas), its constituents, and associated contaminants (e.g., dispersants) under the action of physical oceanographic processes, air–sea interactions, and tropical storms.
2. Chemical evolution and biological degradation of the petroleum/dispersant systems and subsequent interaction with coastal, open-ocean, and deep-water ecosystems.
3. Environmental effects of the petroleum/dispersant system on the sea floor, water column, coastal waters, beach sediments, wetlands, marshes, and organisms; and the science of ecosystem recovery.
4. Technology developments for improved response, mitigation, detection, characterization, and remediation associated with oil spills and gas releases.
5. Fundamental scientific research integrating results from the other four themes in the context of public health.
A criterion for receiving RFP-III funding is that observations and samples collected must be shared and made available to others as requested to the extent that this is practicable.
RFP-III funds will support operating expenditures, including costs for:
• Field work associated with observations and sampling and other time-sensitive research.
• Personnel critical for the observations, sampling, and emergent research.
• Proper preparation or storage of observations and samples for future need.
RFP-III proposals must make a compelling argument for:
• Why the funds are needed and what opportunity will be missed or taken advantage of.
• How funds will be used.
• Evidence that observations and samples are impossible to collect without the requested funding.
The RFP-III was open to all academic and research institutions, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and Federally Funded Research and Development Centers.