DWH NRDA Restoration - Louisiana TIG Draft Restoration Plan/Environmental Assessment #6: Wetlands, Coastal, and Nearshore Habitats
The Deepwater Horizon oil spill was the largest maritime oil spill in U.S. history. It resulted in the discharge of millions of barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. Under the Oil Pollution Act (OPA), each party responsible for a vessel or facility from which oil is discharged, or which poses the substantial threat of a discharge, is liable for, among other things, removal costs and damages for injury to, destruction of, loss, or loss of use of natural resources, including the reasonable cost of assessing the damage. Pursuant to OPA, federal and state natural resource trustees, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Department of the Interior, the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and trustee agencies from the states of Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas, were charged with assessing and restoring for injuries to affected Gulf resources.
Under a global settlement reached on April 4, 2016, the Trustees released the Programmatic Damage Assessment and Restoration Plan/Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PDARP/PEIS). The settlement agreement includes a funding schedule that will extend through 2031. During this timeframe the trustees will provide many opportunities for public participation, including the opportunity to submit project ideas and proposals and to comment on draft restoration plans
Consistent with the PDARP/PEIS, the draft restoration plan includes preferred alternatives to restore and conserve wetlands, coastal, and nearshore habitats injured by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The draft plan evaluates four restoration project alternatives within the Wetlands, Coastal, and Nearshore Habitats restoration type. Of those, three are identified as preferred alternatives:
• West Grand Terre Beach Nourishment and Stabilization
• Golden Triangle Marsh Creation
• Biloxi Marsh Living Shoreline
The draft plan also evaluates a no action alternative. The total estimated cost of the preferred alternatives is approximately $209 million. One or more alternatives may be selected for implementation. Additional restoration planning for the Louisiana Restoration Area will continue.
Louisiana - Joann Hicks, 225-342-5477
EPA - Douglas Jacobson, 214-665-6692