Deepwater Horizon NRDA Florida Trustee Implementation Group Phase V.4
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 Florida Trustee Implementation Group has prepared a Draft Phase V.4 Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment. This Draft Plan supplements the 2016 Final Phase V Early Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment and describes and proposes the fourth phase of the Florida Coastal Access Project intended to continue the process of restoring natural resources and services injured or lost as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The preferred alternative consists of the acquisition of an approximately 114-acre coastal parcel in Wakulla County. Once purchased, the property would be donated to St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge and managed as part of the refuge. The refuge would conduct minor restoration and recreational enhancements on the parcel.
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.