New Campaign Calls for Restoration Projects that Benefit Environment and Economy
The Walton Family Foundation announced a Gulf-wide effort to spotlight business support for restoration projects that will benefit both the economy and the environment. The campaign, Operation 1-1-1, provides a unique platform for fishermen, restaurant owners, community leaders and other coastal residents to tell their stories and call on policymakers to support environmental restoration that benefits local communities.
“The old construct of business and environmental interests being at odds doesn’t work for anyone. We support restoration solutions that make economic sense,” said Scott Burns, director of the Walton Family Foundation’s Environmental Focus Area. “We call it conservationomics – the idea that environmental and economic restoration go hand in hand. That’s what this campaign is all about.”
Partnership for Gulf Coast Land Conservation (PGCLC) Continues Work on Conservation Vision: Save the Date for the November 12 WebEx Training
The PGCLC wants to thank all of the member organizations that have participated in the Strategic Conservation Planning Initiative. We have made good progress since our meeting in New Orleans, and are ready to share some initial results and get your input. Please save the date for a WebEx training from 9:00am – 10:30am CT on Tuesday, November 12. This WebEx is for all PGCLC organizations. WebEx Instructions will be sent shortly. Please contact Liz Barber via email or call (601) 214-3093 if you want to participate and have not received an invitation yet or if your land trust has not yet submitted your focus area information. We want to include all partners!
Farm Bill Negotiations Underway
According to Greenwire, an on-line news service, the 41-member conference committee comprised of members of the House of Representatives and the Senate met for the first time on October 30. As was widely expected, cuts to the national food stamp program and differences in how the bills allocate farm subsidies emerged as the major sticking points during the first meeting. Several other issues are expected to be contentious, and their futures are up in the air. However, conferees expressed optimism that a Farm Bill will be approved by both the full House and Senate and then signed by the president.
The Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership Releases Recommendations on Oil Spill Restoration Funding from the Recreational Fishing Community
The TRCP Report makes recommendations related to protecting and repairing the recreational fishery in the region. Among the recommendations:
- expand and restore oyster reefs;
- protect marshes, sea grasses, mangroves, scallops, corals, barrier islands and artificial reefs;
- improve water quality by limiting nutrients coming from rivers and streams; and
- comprehensively restore the Mississippi River Delta.
“Recreational fishing in the Gulf of Mexico is essential to the region’s unique culture and quality of life,” said Chris Macaluso, director of the TRCP Center for Marine Fisheries. “This report resulted from close engagement with recreational fishermen and a range of experts in fisheries management throughout the Gulf. It presents a vision of what a healthy fishery can be.” View the full report »
Gulf of Mexico Alliance Creates Map of Restoration Projects
GOMA has developed a map that will allow users to view restoration projects across the Gulf of Mexico. The map shows a geographic location for each restoration project as well as information about the purpose of the project and the funding source. This map will be updated as more information becomes available. View the map »
Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality Announces New Public Input Tool
On Thursday, October 17, MDEQ’s Executive Director Trudy Fisher unveiled a new online process for Mississippians to submit oil spill restoration project ideas. The system is designed to be a user friendly process that guides members of the public through the project submittal process. Conservation organizations are encouraged to submit their projects through this website, even if they have submitted their ideas through the NOAA portal or shared them in other forums. Read more information »
The Alabama Gulf Coast Recovery Council Seeks Public Comment
On October 8, the Alabama Council released its draft Restoration Project Information Sheet. Public comments may be submitted through November 7. Read more information »
Texas RESTORE Act Advisory Board Hosts First Meeting
Representatives from 11 state agencies met for the first time on October 2. The Board will assist and advise Governor Rick Perry, and his Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council designee, TCEQ Commissioner Toby Baker, in implementing the RESTORE Act for the state of Texas. Members of the board include representatives from Texas Parks and Wildlife, Texas General Land Office, Texas Workforce Commission, Texas Department of Transportation, Texas Railroad Commission, Texas Department of Agriculture, Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, Texas Water Development Board, Public Utility Commission of Texas, and the Office of the Governor – Economic Development and Tourism Division. Read more information »
Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative Hosts 2014 Conference
The 2014 GOMRI conference will be held January 26 - 29 in Mobile, Alabama. The following topics will be addressed:
- Ecosystem assessment, vulnerability, and resilience: integrated cause and effect studies and trends across disciplines
- Ongoing science, technology, monitoring, and mitigation strategies with respect to the DWH Oil spill response: What is needed to prepare for, support, and manage future hydrocarbon exploration and production in the Gulf of Mexico
- Valuing ecosystem services and quantifying effects of oil spills on ecosystem services through environmental, public health, and socioeconomic science
- Promoting scientific literacy, perception, and expectations about oil spill research among stakeholders.
View more information. EPA’s Gulf of Mexico Program Partnership Opportunity Deadline is November 12, 2013.
The Gulf of Mexico Program is seeking proposals for projects that will address the following priorities: (1) water quality monitoring and/or improvement; (2) coastal habitat and ecosystems enhancement and/or protection; (3) community resilience; and (4) environmental education on one or more of the following: water quality, coastal habitat and ecosystems, and community resilience. These projects must be in the Gulf of Mexico region and its watersheds in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, including their out-of-geographic-region contributory watersheds. Project awards will be between $50,000 and $300,000. The deadline for submitting a proposal is November 12, 2013. View more information »
Training Course on Ecological Restoration Offered
A three day ecological restoration class will be offered by the Apalachicola Bay, Grand Bay, and Weeks Bay Reserves. Participants will learn the principles of ecological restoration including information on restoring specific coastal habitats. The training will be held November 12 – 14 at the Grand Bay Reserve in Moss Point, MS. For more information contact Larissa J. Graham at 228-475-7047 or visit the website.
Partnership for Gulf Coast Land Conservation
Ocean Springs, MS
The Partnership for Gulf Coast Land Conservation is organized under the auspices of the Land Trust Alliance which provides administrative and fiscal support.