From the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation:
Washington, D.C., (July 14, 2016) – The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) today announced the second round of grants from the Gulf Coast Conservation Grants Program (GCCGP). The 18 grants total over $3.4 million and will generate more than $6.5 million in matching funds, for a total conservation impact of $10 million that will enhance coastal habitats, bolster fish and wildlife populations and strengthen resilience along the Gulf of Mexico.
The GCCGP is a competitive grants program that supports priority conservation needs of the Gulf Coast that are not otherwise expected to be funded under NFWF’s Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund or other funding opportunities associated with the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The GCCGP builds on existing alliances and looks to build new partnerships, with major funding provided by the Shell Marine Habitat Program, Southern Company’s Power of Flight Program, U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and other sources.
This year’s grants will support a wide range of conservation projects that will protect over 15,500 acres and restore more than 5,000 acres of critical coastal habitat along the Gulf of Mexico. In addition, these projects will enhance efforts to conserve sea turtles, waterfowl, shorebirds, gamefish and other wildlife important to the heritage of the Gulf Coast.
The projects supported by the new grants employ a range of conservation tactics, including habitat restoration, shoreline enhancement, public outreach and the acquisition of conservation easements. Many of the grants will support advanced scientific research, including new innovations in the use of radio-telemetry “nanotags” to study bird migration and satellite tags to study sea turtles in the open ocean.
"Gulf restoration work is reaching new levels of conservation success, benefiting both wildlife and local communities," said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of NFWF. "We are excited to build on these achievements with this latest round of Gulf grants."
"The Power of Flight program is at the foundation of Southern Company’s ongoing efforts to conserve and enhance bird species so vital to our Southeast region," said Southern Company Chief Environmental Officer Dr. Larry S. Monroe. "Through our funding and support of the Gulf Coast Conservation Grants Program, we are furthering essential wildlife recovery work, while protecting and restoring critical coastal bird populations for future generations."
The GCCGP focuses on strategic conservation projects within coastal areas in Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. The program seeks to advance innovative restoration concepts and approaches, and fund species and habitat projects benefitting Gulf coastal ecosystems and communities.
For a complete list of the grants announced on July 14, visit: http://www.nfwf.org/gulfconservation/Pages/2016-project-list.aspx.