Environmental Compliance Efficiencies Speed Up Restoration of Important Brown Pelican Rookery


"Good Queen Bess" (a.k.a. Queen Elizabeth) is credited with putting an end to a period of instability in mid-16th century England. Unfortunately, the tiny scrap of land in Louisiana that bears her name, Queen Bess Island, has been anything but stable. The island, located about two-and-a-half miles north of Grand Isle in Barataria Bay, has been sinking and eroding into the Gulf of Mexico. This is a matter of grave concern, as Queen Bess Island supports the third largest brown pelican rookery in Louisiana.

Less than five acres of suitable nesting and brood-rearing bird habitat remain on Queen Bess Island, so immediate action is needed to stop the erosion and build back what has been lost. Using $18.7 million of Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment (DWH NRDA) settlement funds from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, a restoration effort aimed at adding 37 acres of prime nesting habitat will start this October. If not for a remarkable regulatory feat, project managers would have had to wait until next year to start the project. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (USFWS’) streamlining of the environmental compliance process led to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps) being able to issue a permit for the project in only two days.

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Notice of Public Comment Period for Alabama Draft Restoration Plan on Recreation and Birds


The Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration (DWH NRDAR) Alabama Trustee Implementation Group (AL TIG), of which the Department of the Interior is a member, is seeking public comment on its recently released draft restoration plan to address injuries to natural resources caused by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The AL TIG will accept comments on the Draft Restoration Plan III through October 3, 2019. 

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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Opens 30-day Public Comment Period on Draft Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment for the East Helena Smelter Site in Lewis and Clark County, East Helena, Montana


The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is soliciting public comment on its Draft Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment (RP/EA) proposes options for habitat restoration projects for migratory birds in Lewis and Clark County, Montana. The Draft RP/EA proposes alternatives to restore natural resources and migratory bird habitat that have been injured by hazardous substances released from the East Helena Smelter Site.

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Restoration Fosters Recreation in the Dutchman Wetlands near Anaconda, MT


A few miles north of Anaconda, Montana, a newly restored landscape is home to a wide range of the state’s native plants and wildlife.

Many unique species of fish, birds, mammals, and vegetation thrive in this expansive wetlands area. Thanks to the site’s two new public access points, trails, and information kiosks, visitors can now learn more about these creatures than ever before.

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Notice of Public Meeting and Public Comment Period – Draft Round 4 Restoration Plan for the Housatonic River Watershed


The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) in coordination with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is seeking public comment on its Round 4 Draft Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment Addendum (RP/EA Addendum) proposing alternatives to restore natural resources injured by the release of chemical wastes, primarily polychlorinated biphenyls ("PCBs"), from the General Electric facility in Pittsfield, Massachusetts; pursuant to the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980, as amended, and the Department of the Interior Natural Resource Damage Assessment regulations (43 C.F.R. Part 11).

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Habitat Restoration Helps Preserve Culture and Tradition in Wisconsin


In the 1950s, hazardous chemicals known as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were released by paper companies into Wisconsin's Fox River/Green Bay ecosystem. This greatly impacted the water quality, native fish and wildlife, and the local community. PCBs are hazardous materials that can accumulate in the food chain, starting with fish and moving through the birds who consume those fish, often causing cancer, decreasing reproductive success and impacting nervous systems and immune systems.

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Deepwater Horizon N. Breton Island Restoration


North Breton Island is a barrier island located a 45-minute boat ride from Venice, Louisiana. For thousands of years the island, which is part of the Breton National Wildlife Refuge, has slowly eroded away due to natural conditions such as severe storms. The island’s lost shoreline has translated into lost habitat for numerous federally protected birds.Unfortunately, North Breton Island has suffered from man-made disasters, too. Like many other barrier islands in the Gulf of Mexico, it was negatively impacted by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Fortunately, this disaster has come with a silver lining, of sorts -- funding for the island’s restoration paid for by BP, the company primarily responsible for the spill. 

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