EA Restoring Delaware Bay's Wetlands and Beaches in Mispillion Harbor Reserve and Milford Neck Conservation Area

The Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resiliency Competitive Grant Program (Program) supports projects that reduce communities' vulnerability to future coastal storms, sea level rise, flooding, erosion, and associated threats through strengthening natural ecosystems that also benefit fish and wildlife. Funding for the Program is administered by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) through the Department of the Interior (DOI) Hurricane Sandy disaster relief appropriation (Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2013).

On June 16, 2014, DOI announced the award of 54 grants totaling $102.75 million. In addition, the grantees committed over $55 million in additional funding and in-kind contributions, for a total conservation investment of over $158 million. Grants were awarded to projects that assess, restore, enhance, or create wetlands, beaches and other natural systems to help better protect communities and to mitigate the impacts of future storms and naturally occurring events on fish and wildlife species and habitats. Projects are located in the region affected by Hurricane Sandy: Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, and West Virginia. Each of these states officially declared a natural disaster as a result of the 2012 Hurricane Sandy storm event.

Upon completion of the projects, the Program will benefit more than 210 communities and engage over 4,800 youths, veterans and volunteers. The Program will also result in more than 8,000 acres of wetlands and marshes restored or created, 220 acres of beach restored and over 182 million gallons of stormwater runoff reduced to protect communities and infrastructure from future storms, as well as to benefit fish and wildlife.

The DOI, as lead federal agency, and its project partner, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC), are proposing to restore the beach and dune system that protects tidal flow and the navigation channel along the Delaware Bayshore at Mispillion Harbor Reserve and adjacent Milford Neck Conservation Area (MNCA) in Kent County, Delaware, immediately west of Delaware Bay, in the Restoring Delaware Bay's Wetlands and Beaches in Mispillion Harbor Reserve and Milford Neck Conservation Area, Federal Financial Assistance Grant Number 43281 (Project) (Figure 1-1). The Mispillion Harbor Reserve is a unit of Milford Neck Wildlife Area, owned and managed by Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife (DEDFW). The harbor is formed by the confluence of the Mispillion River and Cedar Creek, which together flow into Delaware Bay through an inlet stabilized by a mile-long jetty system built and maintained by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). The harbor itself is bounded by more than 200 acres of sandy beach, dune and tidal salt marsh, and is protected on its eastern side by a rock sill that connects with the north inlet jetty and extends approximately 2,700 feet to the north (Figure 1-2).
Comment Period: Closed        Jun 21, 2017 - Jul 21, 2017
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