$67.2 Million Dedicated to Coastal Resilience Program

The He‘eia National Estuarine Research Reserve was the 29th in the NERR system. The He’eia wetlands will see a new natural constructed wetlands system to protect and enhance the ecosystem and community of Kane’ohe Bay, Hawaii. The project will minimize flood events, reduce sediment and nutrient run-off and create habitat and fish passage for marine and estuarine species. (Photo credit: Manuel Mejia, The Nature Conservancy)

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), NOAA and their partners announced $28.9 million in new grants for the restoration or expansion of natural features such as coastal marshes and wetlands, dune and beach systems, oyster and coral reefs, mangroves, forests, coastal rivers and barrier islands that help minimize the impacts of storms, rising sea levels and other extreme events on nearby communities and infrastructure in 22 states and Puerto Rico. The 35 grants will generate $38.3 million in matching contributions for a total conservation impact of $67.2 million.

Congress provided funding for Title IX of the National Oceans and Coastal Security Act, allowing grants to be awarded through a partnership between NFWF, NOAA, Shell Oil Company and TransRe. These grants were then awarded through the newly created National Coastal Resilience Fund (NCRF).

NFWF, in partnership with NOAA, launched the NCRF in 2018 to support on-the-ground projects that engage communities and reduce their vulnerability to growing risks from coastal storms, sea-level rise, flooding, erosion, wildfires, drought and extreme weather through strengthening natural ecosystems that also benefit fish and wildlife.

The projects supported by the 35 grants announced today advance innovative nature-based approaches to improve the resilience of coastal communities. Recognizing the need for action, these projects build on significant coordination and planning that has already been done by many coastal communities and will offer significant benefits for nearby communities and for fish and wildlife.

A complete list of the 2018 grants made through the National Coastal Resilience Fund is available here.

Caption: One grant will restore 180 acres of tidal marsh habitat through the installation of a new water control structure and pump system at John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge in Pennsylvania, adjacent to the Philadelphia International Airport. (Photo credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

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