November 6, 2015
Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) Trustees Release Restoration Plan, Invite Public Comments.
The NRDA Trustees recently released a comprehensive ecosystem restoration plan which will guide their funding decisions for the $8.8 billion in funding that BP will provide in accordance with the settlement agreement. The plan’s goals are to: 1) restore and conserve habitat; 2) restore water quality; 3) replenish and protect living coastal and marine resources; 4) provide and enhance recreational opportunities; and 5) provide for monitoring, adaptive management, and administrative oversight to support restoration implementation. Public comments will be accepted through December 4, 2015. A series of public meetings has been held across the region to discuss the plan and get feedback from community members. The final public meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 10 from 6 – 10 pm in Galveston, TX at 5400 Seawall Boulevard. To view the draft plan or submit a comment, visit http://www.gulfspillrestoration.noaa.gov/2015/10/trustees-propose-comprehensive-restoration-plan-for-the-gulf-of-mexico/.
Environmental Law Institute (ELI) Shares NRDA Plan Explainers.
Haven’t had time to read all 1,700 pages of the Consent Decree and Restoration Plan? ELI has created several helpful infographics that illustrate how NRDA funds will be spent, including State allocations and restoration types. A graph which depicts the timeline for payments from BP is also available. To learn more, visit http://eli-ocean.org/gulf/consent-decree/.
United States Forest Service Invites Applications for Community Forest Program.
The Community Forest Program provides financial assistance to local governments, Tribal governments, and qualified nonprofit entities to establish community forests that provide continuing and accessible community benefits. Eligible lands are private forests that are at least five acres in size, suitable to sustain natural vegetation, and at least 75 percent forested. The lands must also be threatened by conversion to nonforest uses. All applications must be received by State Foresters or Tribal governments by January 15, 2016 and budgets may not exceed $400,000. For more information, visit http://www.fs.fed.us/spf/coop/programs/loa/cfp.shtml.
USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Announces Program in the Apalachicola River Watershed.
The Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint Rivers Conservation Partnership project covers 13 million acres in eastern Alabama, western Georgia and the Florida panhandle. The partnership will assist landowners in implementing NRCS conservation practices, using $4 million in NRCS funds to meet its conservation goals. In Florida, some of the eligible practices include installing fencing, sprinkler retrofits and planting cover crops. The application deadline is December 18, 2015. For more information, visit http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/detail/fl/newsroom/releases/?cid=NRCSEPRD411241.
Texas Agricultural Land Trust to Host Seminar on Preserving Farming and Ranching Lands.
This free seminar will be held in Uvalde, TX on November 13, 2015 from 9:00 am – 2:00 pm. Presenters will discuss the impacts of rural land loss on water, wildlife, and agriculture. Landowners, attorneys, natural resource professional and anyone else who works with farming and ranching families are invited to attend. Registration is recommended. For more information, visit http://www.txaglandtrust.org/uvalde-workshop/?utm_source=Going+Going+GONE+Uvalde+11-2015B&utm_campaign=Conservationists+of+the+Year&utm_medium=email.
Save the Date! December 10th - Webinar on Private Land Partnership Opportunities in the Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund.
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s (NFWF) $2.54 billion Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund (GEBF) supports projects to restore the natural resources that were impacted by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. NFWF works closely with state and federal resource agencies to select projects that remedy harm and eliminate or reduce the risk of future harm to natural resources in the Gulf of Mexico. In 2014, NFWF and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announced a partnership leveraging GEBF and other NFWF funds with NRCS conservation easement program dollars. This partnership presents a variety of opportunities for conservation on Gulf Coast private lands.
Join Mike Sharp, Director, NFWF Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund and Bridget Collins, Manager, NFWF Private Lands Stewardship for a live webinar update on private land partnership opportunities in the GEBF on December 10th at 10 a.m. CST, 11 a.m. EST. Look for registration information in the next Gulf Partnership Update.
2016 Alliance of Florida Land Trusts Annual Meeting
January 7 – 8, 2016
Praire Creek Lodge, Gainesville, FL.
For more information, contact Tom Kay, Alachua Conservation Trust, 352-373-1078.
March 2 – 4, 2016
Airport Hilton, Austin, TX
For more information, visit http://www.texaslandtrustcouncil.org.
2016 Land Trust Alliance Southeast Regional Conference
May 11 – 13, 2016
For more information, visit http://www.landtrustalliance.org/what-we-do/our-regional-programs/southeast.
Find us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/GulfPartnership and visit our website at www.gulfpartnership.org. The Partnership for Gulf Coast Land Conservation is organized under the auspices of the Land Trust Alliance which provides administrative and fiscal support. The mission of the Gulf Partnership is to work together across the five Gulf of Mexico states to increase the pace, quality and permanence of voluntary land and water conservation in the coastal region. For more information regarding any item in this newsletter, contact Julia Weaver, Partnership Co-Coordinator at 228-219-2279 or email@example.com.