Interior Bureaus to Work with Local Partners on Coastal Restoration and Resiliency Efforts
GALLOWAY, NJ – In advance of next week's one-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell today joined Interior and local officials at Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in New Jersey to announce that $162 million will be invested in 45 restoration and research projects that will better protect Atlantic Coast communities from future powerful storms, by restoring marshes, wetlands and beaches, rebuilding shorelines, and researching the impacts and modeling mitigation of storm surge impacts.
An additional $45 million is being invested in assessments, modeling, coastal barrier mapping, and other projects to provide Federal, State, and local land managers and decision makers the information and tools they need to improve resiliency and prepare for future storms.
A Technical Review Panel of ten experts from eight Interior bureaus and the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration evaluated all 94 submitted projects totaling a requested $541 million. Using a framework developed by Interior's Strategic Sciences Group, the panel scored each project within the Sandy impact area based on the ability to strengthen Federal assets and build coastal resilience to withstand future storms. Projects were selected based on their ability to provide measurable restoration outcomes and resilience benefits or useful data or management tools in a short timeframe. A priority was given to projects that will employ youth and veterans.
A list of all 45 approved projects can be found HERE.
Jewell also announced that the Department would issue a Request for Proposals on October 29 for an additional $100 million in grant funding under the Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resiliency Competitive Grant Program announced in August. States, local communities, non-profit organizations and other partners can compete for funding for innovative projects under the program, which is being administered by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. Information on the competition can be found at http://www.doi.gov/hurricanesandy.
"The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation will use its networks of partners to promote the grant opportunity, aid potential grant applicants in shaping proposals that meet our objectives and to identify opportunities to leverage the $100 million with other funding sources to rebuild, restore, and research natural defenses that protect communities," Jewell said. "I am certain that we will see innovative ideas and projects that will help us be much better prepared the next time a super storm rolls up the Atlantic coast."