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NOAA Funds 50 Recovery Act Coastal Restoration Projects
In February 2009, the President signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which was a bill intended to stimulate and sustain jobs throughout the American economy. As part of this effort, NOAA received $167 million to invest in coastal habitat restoration and help jumpstart the nation’s economy by supporting thousands of jobs.
Using a competitive evaluation process, NOAA set out to select a diverse set of habitat restoration projects that would restore damaged wetlands, sea grass, shellfish beds, and coral reefs. Some of the projects would also focus on reopening fish passages that boost the health and resiliency of our nation’s coastal and Great Lakes communities.
In July 2009, NOAA selected 50 projects from a pool of more than 800 proposals totaling $3.2 billion in requests, working through a rigorous selection process to identify and prioritize projects meeting the Recovery Act’s criteria.
When complete, NOAA’s habitat restoration Recovery Act projects will restore more than 8,700 acres and open more than 700 miles of habitat. The projects also will remove more than 850 metric tons of debris, rebuild oyster and other shellfish habitat, and protect 11,750 acres to reduce threats to coral reefs. Healthy coastal and marine habitats support valuable fisheries and protected species, improve water quality, provide recreational opportunities for the public’s use and enjoyment, and buffer coastal communities from the impacts of storms and sea level rise.
For more information, photos, and video of funded projects nationwide, visit www.noaa.gov/recovery.