Please select your home edition
Edition
Sailing Holidays 2019 - TOP

$8.2 million in grants to aid communities after hurricanes

by NOAA Fisheries 27 Mar 18:11 UTC
Derelict vessel on coral reef © Pacific Coastal Research and Planning

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and NOAA's Marine Debris Program today announced $8.2 million in six new grants for the assessment, removal and proper disposal of marine debris that was caused by hurricanes Michael and Florence in Florida and North Carolina, and Typhoon Yutu in the Northern Mariana Islands. Contributions from the grantees will bring the total conservation impact to nearly $8.6 million.

Severe storms can cause significant marine debris, including capsized vessels, displaced fishing gear, wrecked docks and piers, and flooding that deposits large land-based debris such as trees, cars, and parts of homes and buildings.

This debris can cause both immediate and prolonged harm to coastal communities, affecting navigation safety and coastal and marine industry and tourism. Marine debris can also harm wildlife, which can become entangled in it and feed on harmful materials.

"Our own human well-being and economic prosperity depend upon the health and resilience of natural and social systems," said retired Navy Rear Adm. Tim Gallaudet, Ph.D., deputy NOAA administrator. "These grants will help communities recover from storm damage by assessing, removing and disposing of storm-generated debris that continues to affect wildlife, habitats and coastal communities."

NFWF, in partnership with NOAA, launched the Hurricane Response Marine Debris Removal Fund in 2019 to support on-the-ground projects to assess, remove and dispose of debris created or moved by severe storms. Grant awards will help coastal communities fill in the gaps of other available funding to clean up their coasts and waterways of potentially damaging debris.

"Storm debris fields in nearshore waters and coastal beaches and environments impact economic recovery and vitality, as well as ecological integrity," said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of NFWF. "This new Hurricane Response Marine Debris Removal Fund is an excellent approach to quickly get storm debris removal funds to those communities impacted by Hurricanes Michael and Florence and Typhoon Yutu, as Congress intended."

The projects supported by the six grants announced today will remove large structural debris in four Florida counties, derelict and abandoned vessels from sensitive coastal habitats in North Carolina, and large storm debris from coral reefs in the Northern Mariana Islands.

Grants for this fund are awarded based on how marine debris can harm coastal communities and resources, and to prevent further damage to sensitive marine habitats and species listed under the Endangered Species Act.

A complete list of the grants made through the Hurricane Response Marine Debris Removal Fund is available here [PDF].

Congress provided funding under the Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2019 (P.L. 116-20), allowing grants to be awarded through a partnership between NFWF and NOAA. These grants were then awarded through the newly created Hurricane Response Marine Debris Removal Fund.

Related Articles

Busy Atlantic hurricane season is expected
Multiple climate factors indicate above-normal activity is most likely An above-normal 2020 Atlantic hurricane season is expected, according to forecasters with NOAA's Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. Posted on 24 May
Team frees entangled humpback whale
Multiple sets of fishing gear were so heavy, they 'anchored the whale in place' A trained response team on Monday freed a humpback whale in Monterey Bay. It had become so severely entangled and weighed down by commercial dungeness crab fishing gear that it could not move. Posted on 23 May
Teamwork saves harbor seal
Volunteers and experts formed a rescue team to safely release the seal A series of fortunate events recently led to a happy ending for a harbor seal. It had gotten its canine teeth stuck in the steel grated walkway at the hatchery in Valdez. Posted on 22 May
Technology unlocks the world of beaked whales
It takes a combination of luck and perseverance to study them. Beaked whales are a fascinating and elusive group of cetacean species. Beaked whales live in deep water environments, and dive to incredible depths for long periods of time, making them mysterious and difficult to find. Posted on 16 May
How well do you know Hawaii's hawksbill turtles?
This Endangered Species Day, take our 10-question quiz to find out! May 15 marks Endangered Species Day, a time when we celebrate the protection of endangered species and their habitat. Hawai'i is often called the endangered species "capital" of the nation. Posted on 15 May
Importance of Sea Stars in deep-sea ecosystems
Key finding of a new article by Christopher L. Mah Sea stars play an important role in deep-sea ecosystems, especially as predators of sponges and corals (mostly octocorals). Posted on 3 May
Teams free entangled humpback whale
Fast coordination by trained responders leads to safe and successful outcome A trained team freed a humpback whale entangled in lines from a prawn trap set off Santa Cruz Island on Tuesday afternoon, April 14, 2020. Posted on 29 Apr
Restoring Gulf 10 years after Deepwater Horizon
See how we're working with partners and Gulf communities to restore its fisheries and habitats The impacts from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill affected the entire Gulf ecosystem. Oil sank down to the ocean floor, mixed into the water column, seeped into marshes, and soiled beaches. Animals swam through it, inhaled it, and even ingested the oil. Posted on 28 Apr
One program's quest to save endangered turtles
A new StoryMap details the struggles faced by hawksbill sea turtle population In Hawaii, fewer than 200 nesting female hawksbill sea turtles have been documented in the last 30 years. These turtles—known as honu'ea in Hawaiian—make up one of the most endangered sea turtle populations in the world. Posted on 19 Apr
10 years after Deepwater Horizon oil spill
Learn more about our efforts to restore the Gulf's ecosystem since then This April, NOAA is commemorating 10 years since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, considered the largest U.S. offshore oil spill in history, resulting in the tragic loss of human and marine life. Posted on 18 Apr
Grapefruit Graphics 2019 - FooterCyclops Marine 2020 - FOOTERMarine Resources 2019 - Footer