For Immediate Release: March 23, 2010
Contact: Miki Teer
State Awards Six Grants to Projects through Conservation and Restoration Partnership Fund
BATON ROUGE -- The CPRA has awarded six grants totaling $3.39 million in budget surplus funds from 2009 to non-governmental conservation organizations and private landowners through its Fiscal Year 2010 Conservation and Restoration Partnership Fund to help construct ecosystem restoration projects across coastal Louisiana.
Ducks Unlimited received the largest award for the Calcasieu-Sabine Watershed Restoration project with the fund providing $1.78 million and Ducks Unlimited providing an additional $1.2 million. This project in Cameron Parish will restore the historic flow of First Bayou and will create 105,000 linear feet of earthen terraces in the formerly vegetated Gum Cove area.
"Ducks Unlimited is extremely pleased the CPRA included funding for restoration partnerships in its annual plan," Ducks Unlimited Director of Public Policy for Coastal Louisiana Jennifer Grand said. "These types of partnerships are vital to restoring coastal Louisiana. We thank Governor Jindal for his continued support of the Louisiana coast and look forward to more partnership opportunities with the state in the future."
Other projects awarded funds include:
Westwego WHARF - Wetland Harbor Activities Recreational Facility - This is an outdoor recreational park near the town of Westwego in Jefferson Parish that will provide recreational opportunities for the physically challenged. Additionally, it will provide the City of Westwego with some hurricane protection. The project was awarded $1 million from the Conservation Fund with Trust for Public Land providing $1.25 million.
Christian Marsh Terraces - This project will create 20,850 linear feet of earthen terraces in a shallow open water area between Freshwater Bayou and the McIlhenny Canal in Vermillion Parish. The area was formerly vegetated but was decimated by Hurricane Rita. The $454,720 grant was awarded to Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana with a match of $298,000.
10,000 Trees for Louisiana - This project will plant trees donated by RPM Ecosystems, primarily cypress and ridge species, at five potential locations to create between 65 and 85 acres of coastal forest habitat. This is another project sponsored by Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana with a match of $335,790 for the $84,475 grant.
Terrebonne Vegetative Plantings - This project will conduct vegetative plantings on the newly created marsh cells and earthen plugs on the North Lake Mechant Landbridge CWPPRA project. In addition, plantings will be conducted at three other areas in Terrebonne Parish. The state will pay $40,000 with Terrebonne Parish matching with $30,000.
North Lake Mechant Landbridge completion - This project will install an earthen plug, completing the North Lake Mechant Landbridge project, aiding in the prevention of saltwater intrusion into interior marsh areas. Conoco Phillips is sponsoring this project with $5,000 and the state providing $30,000.
The Conservation and Restoration Partnership Fund is designed to maximum conservation and restoration efforts by leveraging non-state dollars for well-designed coastal restoration projects in areas of need.
State coastal restoration and hurricane protection officials announced they were seeking project proposals at the January 27, 2010 CPRA meeting and proposals were accepted through February 26.
The awarding criteria was based on consistency with the state's coastal master plan, the estimated acreage conserved and restored, synergism with other projects, constructability and the amount of matching funds.
A total of 21 proposals were received from 17 organizations or individuals. The proposals requested a total of $10.4 million and offered $7.5 million in matching funds. The six projects selected will provide a total of $6.5 million for conservation and restoration efforts.
Steve Mathies, executive director of the Office of Coastal Protection and Restoration, said working with other entities beyond the state and federal level is an important facet of restoring Louisiana's coastal ecosystems.
"Given the magnitude of our current situation, we are always looking for opportunities to partner up with anyone who has the goal of conserving and restoring Louisiana's coast. This fund allows the state to work with those who share the same desire - a well-functioning coastline and healthy coastal wetlands," Mathies said.
For more information about Louisiana's coastal restoration and hurricane protection efforts, please contact Miki Teer at (225) 342-7307 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority's mandate is to develop, implement and enforce a comprehensive coastal protection and restoration master plan. For the first time in Louisiana's history, this single state authority will integrate coastal restoration and hurricane protection by marshaling the expertise and resources of the Louisiana Office of Coastal Protection and Restoration and other state agencies, to speak with one clear voice for the future of Louisiana's coast. Working with federal, state and local political subdivisions, including levee districts, the CPRA will work to establish a safe and sustainable coast that will protect our communities, the nation's critical energy infrastructure, and our bountiful natural resources for generations to come. The CPRA of Louisiana was established by Act 8 of the 1st Extraordinary Session of 2005.
Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority
Capitol Annex - State of Louisiana
P.O. Box 44027
Baton Rouge, LA 70804-4027
(c) 2010 Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority
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