New Gulf Restoration Projects Seek Public Comment

Beach-nesting birds such as this juvenile black skimmer will benefit from the Gulf habitat restoration projects proposed by the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment Trustees | Egmont Key NWR, Keith Ramos

The Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment Trustees have released a near-term restoration plan focusing on nesting habitat for birds and sea turtles along the Gulf Coast. The $9 million dollar effort includes two proposed projects to mitigate damages incurred by these sensitive habitats. The avian beach-nesting project will protect nesting habitat affected by oil spill response activities. Similarly, the sea turtle project will work to reduce artificial light pollution in loggerhead nesting habitat brought on by oil spill response operations.

“We are pleased to be able to move forward with these important projects that restore key nesting and wintering habitats for Florida’s coastal wildlife, and we will continue to work with our fellow Trustees to address the full injury the Deepwater Horizon explosion and resulting oil spill created,” said Nick Wiley, Florida’s Co-Trustee with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. “Restoring these damages to the Gulf Coast is vital to the families and businesses that depend on healthy and diverse fish and wildlife resources, and we look forward to working closely with our coastal communities as these projects take shape.”

The draft plan is open for public review and comment through December 10, 2012. For instructions on how to comment please read more here. Read the full report here.

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