Governor Robert Bentley on Wednesday praised the work of a multi-state and federal council that has finalized plans for a first round of Gulf Coast restoration projects.
The projects that will move forward in Alabama include a Marsh Island restoration project in Mobile County. Also, a dune restoration project will benefit portions of the Baldwin County coastline.
The projects are part of a series of coastal restorations in Alabama and other Gulf Coast states. Funding for the projects comes from an unprecedented $1 billion agreement with BP to fund initial restoration efforts. Coastal areas continue long-term recovery from the effects of the oil spill that followed the April 20, 2010, Deepwater Horizon explosion in the Gulf of Mexico.
"These projects are part of our comprehensive efforts to address the impact of the oil spill on our state, its resources, and its people," Governor Bentley said. "Alabama's coast is one of the state's greatest natural treasures, and our efforts will continue to see that all of the damages we have sustained are properly addressed."
The Alabama coastal restorations are part of the "Deepwater Horizon Phase I Early Restoration Plan & Environmental Assessment" that was released Wednesday. Other Phase I projects will take place in Florida, Mississippi, and Louisiana.
"We are confident that the projects will help achieve our goal of healing the Gulf's ecosystem. This is an ongoing effort, and we expect to announce additional projects in the near future," said Cooper Shattuck, legal advisor to Governor Bentley and chair of the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment Trustee Council's Executive Committee.
Additional projects will be identified for future funding in the second phase of the restoration plan. As in the first phase of the plan, additional public input will be received during a series of meetings that will be scheduled at a later date. Additional feedback will be accepted online and via traditional mail.