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Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Awards

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Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Awards

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Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Awards

Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Awards

Habitat Protection and Restoration Awards
National Coastal Zone Management Program

In April 2023, NOAA announced the distribution of $74.4 million in funds from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act for coastal zone management programs to support coastal habitat restoration and conservation projects and capacity-building. This includes $50.1 million across 20 projects and $24.3 million to support capacity-building and additional staff to manage these, and to develop impactful projects and carry out other projects, planning, and initiatives to advance the resilience of their coastal communities. Award descriptions are below, and can be downloaded here.

Conservation of Coastal Pine Savanna and Emergent Marsh Habitat on West Fowl River, Mississippi Sound in Mobile County, Alabama

Recipient: Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
Federal Funding: $1,103,000
Summary: This land purchase will conserve and protect sensitive tidal marsh, pine flatwood, and savanna habitats, which act as a habitat and nursery ground for commercially and recreationally important fishery species, protect uplands from storm surge and coastal flooding, and allow carbon to be sequestered.

American Samoa Wetlands Delineation

Recipient: American Samoa Government Department of Commerce
Federal Funding: $203,000
Summary: This investment will benefit ecosystems and communities by completing an effort to verify and map wetlands, as well as conducting wetland monitoring, partner training, and community outreach workshops on their ecosystem benefits. The effort will also support the update of land use permitting policies and regulations to help ensure the protection of these wetlands and the services they provide, including the mitigation of flooding, and will help identify and inform prioritization of future nature-based restoration projects in each wetland village.

Restoring and Strengthening Resilience of Maui Nui Reefs

Recipient: The Coral Reef Alliance
Federal Funding: $3,194,361
Summary: This investment will restore habitats and strengthen coastal resilience at two sites in West Maui and South Molokaʻi in Hawaiʻi. Specifically, this project will restore the lower Wahikuli streambank, restore estuarine habitat within two 30-acre fishponds in south shore Molokaʻi, engage the community in designing a water quality outreach and education program, and document lessons learned to inform and scale future restoration efforts statewide.

Critical Conservation Land Acquisition for Climate Resilience in the Northeast Florida Blueway

Recipient: Florida Department of Environmental Protection
Federal Funding: $6,000,000 ($5,373,363 in FY22 funds; $626,637 in FY23 funds)
Summary: This award will fund the acquisition of a portion of the remaining 10,976 acres of the 73,400- acre Northeast Florida Blueway project, which is part of the Florida Forever Program’s Climate Change Lands. Most of the acquisition is within the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve and will protect and maintain the waters and shoreline plant communities of the Tolomato and Matanzas Rivers, which provide critical habitat for 14 federally listed species of plants and animals.

Ossabaw Island Living Shoreline: A Collaboration to Model Resiliency through Ecosystem Restoration

Recipient: Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Coastal Resources Division
Federal Funding: $826,000
Summary: This project will result in the design and construction of a living shoreline on Ossabaw Island in Georgia. Significant ecological and cultural resources are being lost to erosion on the island due to an increase in storm events, wave frequency, and tidal inundation. The project will restore functional estuarine habitat and protect natural shoreline ecosystems, while preserving unique cultural and archeological resources.

Coastal Conservation at Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge Cameron Parish, Louisiana

Recipient: Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Federal Funding: $4,000,000
Summary: This purchase of 6,800 acres of critical coastal habitat in Cameron Parish, Louisiana, directly adjacent to the Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge, will reduce coastal flood risks, conserve critical ecosystems, and preserve habitats for a variety of coastal resources, as well as provide much needed public recreational opportunities through the expansion of public lands.

Coastal Habitat Resilience and Community Adaptation in Downeast Maine

Recipient: Maine Department of Marine Resources
Federal Funding: $1,654,680
Summary: This project will apply innovative, science-based approaches to inform the planning and design of infrastructure projects. The project will strengthen partnerships through a collaborative, locally-led process to gather new scientific information and work with communities to derive solutions to flooding that also benefit key habitats to alewifes and other sea run fish, and will result in increased local and regional capacity to manage and implement similar projects in Downeast Maine.

Manchester Central Street Bridge Replacement and Sawmill Brook Restoration Project

Recipient: Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs
Federal Funding: $1,561,511
Summary: This award supports habitat restoration and fish passage while increasing resiliency for the Town of Manchester-by-the-Sea. The project includes replacing the Central Street Bridge, removing a tide gate structure, upgrading channel walls, restoring saltmarsh wetlands, and creating living shorelines to stabilize the stream banks. One acre of salt marsh and 1,534 linear feet of stream connectivity will be restored, which in turn will improve resiliency for the Sawmill Brook watershed and the community.

Truro Pamet River Restoration

Recipient: Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs
Federal Funding: $2,183,779
Summary: This award will result in a feasibility study and the collection of the data necessary to design a remediation of six tidal restrictions within five project focus areas: the Little Pamet River, Lower Pamet, Upper Pamet, Mill Pond, and Eagle Neck Creek Earthen Berm. These elements together will support the greater goal of restoring salt marsh functioning within the Pamet River system.

Resilient Tidal Crossings Project - Building Resilience through Upgraded Replacements of High Priority Tidal Culverts

Recipient: New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services
Federal Funding: $2,988,122
Summary: This project will result in the replacement of three undersized tidal culverts on state roads in the towns of Stratham and Rye. Repairing these tidal crossings was identified as a high priority via the New Hampshire Resilient Tidal Crossings Project. The project will replace the existing culverts at these sites with upgraded alternatives, which in turn will increase ecosystem and flood resiliency.

Beach Restoration to Create Habitat and Protect Tidal Salt Marsh Buffers within the Bay Point Area of Lawrence Township

Recipient: New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
Federal Funding: $3,500,137
Summary: This investment in restored shoreline will improve community resilience by enhancing ecosystem services that mitigate flooding and extreme weather and protect human lives and critical infrastructure. The project will restore habitat within the Bay Point peninsula of Lawrence Township in Cumberland County. The Bay Point shoreline ecosystem also provides critical spawning habitat for horseshoe crabs and foraging grounds for the federally listed red knot.

Bay River Coastal Partnership

Recipient: North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission
Federal Funding: $500,000
Summary: This award will support the Bay River Coastal Partnership in the purchase and conservation of an ecologically significant coastal property within the over 400-acre Bay River Tract in Pamlico County. Conservation of this area will protect an undeveloped natural shoreline and rare coastal forest communities, minimize the loss of life and property by directing development out of a high risk area, and safeguard coastal water quality along the Bay River.

Chagrin River Floodplain Land Conservation Project

Recipient: Ohio Department of Natural Resources
Federal Funding: $1,705,000
Summary: These funds will be used to acquire 105 acres of riparian habitat along the Chagrin River in a coastal community approximately four miles upstream from the confluence with Lake Erie. The Chagrin River Floodplain Land Conservation Project will provide critical habitat that will increase climate resiliency for urban coastal communities and will contribute to a growing conservation, public access, and recreation corridor along the river, from downtown Willoughby to Lake Erie.

Conservation of Cape Foulweather Headland, an Icon of the Central Oregon Coast

Recipient: Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development
Federal Funding: $2,011,465
Summary: Through this funding, the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians will purchase the ecologically and culturally significant “Cape Foulweather” property, located on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. This project will conserve the undeveloped coastal property that hosts habitats rich in marine mammals, a rare salt spray meadow complex, and upland forest connections that are important to threatened species. The headland will provide opportunities for community resilience education and play a central role in the stewardship and conservation of these important tribal lands and waters. Partners in the project will build from this investment toward a conservation and education program that strengthens community resilience in an inclusive, informed manner.

South Carolina’s Black River State Park Land Conservation Project Georgetown County, South Carolina

Recipient: South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control
Federal Funding: $4,500,000
Summary: Conservation partners will use these funds to conserve 1,800 acres of key floodplain properties within two coastal counties. The area will allow for recreational uses compatible with habitat protection, including fishing, non-motorized boating, birding, hiking, biking, kayaking, camping, picnicking, and environmental education.

Mangrove, Seagrass, and Coral Restoration in the Vieques Bioluminescent Bay Natural Reserve

Recipient: The Vieques Conservation and Historical Trust
Federal Funding: $2,962,196
Summary: This funding will restore coastal habitats within Bahía Puerto Mosquito, also known as the Vieques Bioluminescent Bay, located within the Vieques Bioluminescent Bay Natural Reserve. The project will create living shorelines and expand the restoration of mangroves and coral reef habitat, which will improve ecosystem and community resilience.

Virginia Eelgrass and Bay Scallop Restoration in Burtons Bay

Recipient: Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
Federal Funding: $2,259,633
Summary: Building on the knowledge gained from a successful eelgrass and bay scallop restoration in southern Virginia’s coastal bays, this project will focus on Burtons Bay. Over a four-year period, at least 60 acres of eelgrass will be planted and over six million bay scallops released. The project will include long-term monitoring, as well as an educational component,with the end goal of a healthy and expanding eelgrass meadow and a resident scallop population in Burtons Bay that will enhance water quality, create carbon stocks, and increase productivity of a commercially harvested species.

Conservation of Ancestral Lands – Upper Mattaponi Indian Tribe's Return to the River

Recipient: Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
Federal Funding: $3,037,052
Summary: The Upper Mattaponi Indian Tribe, through the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program, will acquire and conserve 866 acres of historic tribal lands along the tribe’s namesake river, the Mattaponi, within the Chesapeake Bay watershed. This is the tribe’s first opportunity to acquire ancestral lands for conservation, which will allow them to pursue future activities to enhance culturally significant fish, wildlife, and plants through habitat restoration. The conservation benefits will extend to tribal citizens and others who enjoy the region’s coast.

Graveyard Spit Restoration & Resilience Project

Recipient: Washington State Department of Transportation
Federal Funding: $3,976,788
Summary: This investment will result in the restoration and protection of Graveyard Spit, on the north shore of Willapa Bay, to help protect community infrastructure and cultural resources that are threatened by sea level rise and other coastal hazards. The project will include the rehabilitation and revegetation of the historic barrier dune; the construction of a nature-based cobble berm; and the protection and restoration of backshore marsh and tidal embayment environments.

Sand River Headwaters Acquisition

Recipient: Wisconsin Department of Administration
Federal Funding: $1,965,000
Summary: This project will allow Bayfield County to acquire 2,001 acres of ecologically significant land that are vital to the health and functioning of Lake Superior’s coastal resources. The ecosystems within the acquired land provide stopover habitat for migratory birds, spawning areas for Great Lakes fish, aesthetic views of Lake Superior, and passive recreation.The acquisition also completes a broader agreement with the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa for the county’s reinvestment of proceeds from an earlier land sale that repatriated nearby land formerly owned by the county to the Red Cliff.

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