DWH NRDA Restoration - Louisiana TIG Draft Restoration Plan/Environmental Assessment #5: Living Coastal and Marine Resources - Marine Mammals and Oyster
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 Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group has prepared the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group Draft Restoration Plan/Environmental Assessment #5: Living Coastal and Marine Resources - Marine Mammals and Oysters. This plan considers project alternatives to contribute to the restoration of injured living coastal and marine resources, specifically, mammal and oyster resources in the Louisiana restoration area. The total estimated cost of the for preferred project alternatives is approximately $28.7 million.
Two alternatives are evaluated to address restoration for marine mammal resources. The preferred alternative is: "Increasing Capacity and Expanding Partnerships along the Louisiana Coastline for Marine Mammal Stranding Response".
Four alternatives are evaluated to address restoration for oyster resources; three of which are preferred alternatives. Those include: "Cultch Plant Oyster Restoration"; "Enhancing Oyster Recovery Using Brood Reefs"; and, "Hatchery-based Oyster Restoration".
Mel Landry, NOAA (225) 778-7380