Building Partnerships for a Healthier Gulf
Gulf of Mexico Alliance
 
e-Newsletter November 2017  
Jump to our regular sections on Restoration , Funding , Comment Periods , and Events .
 
On November 16th, the Gulf of Mexico Alliance Management Team approved the new 2017 Gulf Star Program recipients. More than $666,075 thousand will go toward 11  projects across the five Gulf States. The awards support th e Governors' Action Plan III in the areas of coastal resilience, water quality, habitat resources, education, data and monitoring, wildlife, and ecosystem services. 
GOMAGOMA Priority Issue Team Mid-Year Meetings
 
The Gulf of Mexico Alliance Priority Issue Teams are holding individual team mid-year meetings over the next few months. The one or two-day meetings are intended to give the Teams an opportunity to work more closely on specific projects related to Action Plan III.   
 
Coastal Resilience Meeting
The Coastal Resilience Team held their annual mid-year meeting in Pensacola, Florida this month. The Team discussed Gulf of Mexico and international resilience case studies in addition to reviewing their Gulf Star projects. The meeting included very popular walking tours focused on green infrastructure and low impact development. A panel discussion on insurance as it relates to improved storm and hazard resilience set the stage for future actions in the Team. 
 
Planned Team Meetings 
February 7, 2018: Wildlife and Fisheries (in conjunction with GoMOSES)
February 8, 2018: Habitat Resources (in conjunction with GoMOSES)
February 27-28, 2018: Education and Engagement
April 2018: Data and Monitoring 

The Water Resources Team is in the planning stages. Contact your Team's Coordinator for details. If you are looking for other events, scroll through our events calendar for these and other upcoming activities.
TNC Launches New Migratory Species Conservation Project

The Gulf of Mexico hosts a wealth of migratory marine life, including 70 percent of highly migratory fish, several sea turtle species, one-third of North American bird species and many marine mammals in the North Atlantic. Studying the migratory pathways, or "blueways," of these marine species increases our understanding of what occurs within this ecosystem and how it is interconnected. 

The Nature Conservancy's newly-launched Migratory Species Conservation Project website offers useful resources and interactive spatial tools designed to help researchers, scientists and conservationists analyze blueways in order to minimize human impact in the Gulf of Mexico, preserve migratory marine species and achieve a healthier, more resilient marine ecosystem.

Hypoxia Task Force Reports to Congress

The Hypoxia Task Force recently released its 2017 Report to Congress on the actions the federal, state, and tribal members have taken toward the goal of reducing nitrogen and phosphorus pollution in the Mississippi/Atchafalaya River Basin and shrinking the size of the Gulf of Mexico hypoxic zone.
 
The Report to Congress includes:
  • The environmental, economic, and social impacts of Gulf of Mexico hypoxia and harmful algal blooms;
  • Information about the size of the hypoxic zone since 1985 and sources of nutrient loading in the MARB;
  • Progress of state nutrient reduction strategy development and implementation;
  • Federal agency programs that support state implementation of nutrient reduction strategies;
  • Evaluation and highlights lessons learned by presenting broader HTF successes and successful state projects; and
  • Recent HTF efforts to track the environmental results of state strategy implementation.
restorationRestoration

Activities related to Deepwater Horizon oil spill research and restoration are updated monthly.


Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council (RESTORE Council)The Council
is preparing to nominate a new Council Chair. The RESTORE Act provides that the State Council Members select a federal member at a Council meeting and make a recommendation to the President of the United States, and the President then appoints the new Chair. T hose interested in RESTORE Council activities and notices are encouraged to sign up for eBlasts. Complete information is available on  RestoreTheGulf.gov
 
U.S. Department of Treasury - All RESTORE Act Direct Component activities administered by the Department of Treasury are listed on the official website

In the States

Florida - The Gulf Consortium and  Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) maintain  websites of related restoration information.  Triumph Gulf Coast, Inc., is a nonprofit corporation organized to oversee the expenditure of 75 percent of all funds recovered by the Florida attorney general for economic damages to the state that resulted from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Triumph may make awards from available funds. The application is now available. View this and other activity here.   
 
Alabama - A public meeting to offer interested stakeholders an opportunity to ask questions about the tasks associated with the Alabama Barrier Island Restoration Assessment (ABIRA) is set for Monday, December 11, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab, Dauphin Island, Alabama. On On September 27th, the Alabama Gulf Coast Recovery Council (AGCRC) made available State Expenditure Plan Project Selection Process documents (Framework, Framework Description, Appendix A) and the Direct Component RFE Project Evaluation Form, Subrecipient Questionnaire, and related FAQs. Read more about the AGCRC activities on their website.
 
Mississippi - On November 14th, MDEQ Executive Director Gary Rikard made several restoration announcements during the annual Restoration Summit. Two proposed plans were released for public review and comment. These are the amended Multiyear Implementation Plan and 2017 State Expenditure Plan. Public response is due by January 15, 2018. Also announced were 19 new projects through two funding programs: the RESTORE Act and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. To read about these and other Mississippi activities visit Making Mississippi Whole
 
Louisiana - The State of Louisiana is represented by the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) on state and RESTORE Council activities. Restoration activities are conducted in conjunction with the State's Master Plan. C oastal Louisiana restoration updates are available on the CPRA website.

Texas -  TCEQ Commissioner Baker announced on October 30th the submission of the Texas Multi-Year Implementation Plan (MIP) to the U.S. Department of Treasury. The MIP addresses 26 projects with an estimated cost of $114.2 million. All Deepwater Horizon related Texas restoration activities can be found on www.restorethetexascoast.org.

Centers of Excellence

Florida RESTORE Act Centers of Excellence Program ( FLRACEP)
Alabama Center of Excellence (ACE)
Mississippi Based RESTORE Act Center of Excellence (MBRACE)
RESTORE Act Center of Excellence Louisiana
Texas OneGulf
Texas Subsea Systems Institute

NOAA RESTORE Act Science Program -   Updates and information on this program are found their dedicated website. 

National Academy of Sciences (NAS) Gulf Research Program - The program announced on November 6th the availability of $2 million to help scientists recover from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Cycle 1 is due January 3, 2018 and Cycle 2 is due February 28, 2018. Announcements and activities related to Gulf of Mexico research and restoration can be found on the Gulf Research Program website

Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) - The NRDA Trustees are holding a public meeting today, November 30th in Mobile, Alabama, at the Renaissance Riverview Plaza.  They will provide an update on their work since the BP settlement, and describe restoration planning activities and opportunities for public engagement.  Representatives of the seven Trustee Implementation Groups (TIGs) will give updates. TIG activity this month:
  • The Florida TIG released its Draft Phase V.2 Restoration Plan and Supplemental Environmental Assessment. The plan proposes activities to compensate for lost recreational use. The TIG is seeking public comment on the draft through December 8, 2017.
All Trustee activities and comprehensive Gulf NRDA information is available on www.gulfspillrestoration.noaa.gov.

National Fish & Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) -  This month NFWF announced more than $100 million toward projects approved for restoration on the Gulf Coast. This is the fifth round of grants from the Gulf Environmental Benefit Fun.  Read more about the announcement and projects in individual states. The NFWF  website has information on all funded projects with a map of all their programs worldwide. 

North American Conservation Wetlands Act fund (NAWCA) - Grant deadlines and other information are available on the NAWCA website. A meta-database is available to search for previous awards. The next grant cycle deadline is February 2018. 

Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) - The 2018 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill & Ecosystem Science Conference will be February 5-8, 2018 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in New Orleans, Louisiana.  This month organizers announced the 2018 Program to include Monday workshops and the return of the Data Tools Cafe. Check the website for details. Get comprehensive information on GoMRI at gulfresearchinitiative.org. 

Visit the Deepwater Horizon Project Tracker Story Map.
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fundingFunding

The Gulf of Mexico Alliance maintains a Funding Opportunities web page of current opportunities. Below are selected opportunities from that page.

Link to Funding Opportunities page

USDA NRCS Texas Urban Conservation Project - The overall intent of this solicitation is to solicit partnerships to help enhance the implementation of key conservation objectives and priorities. The deadline is December 15, 2017.  
 
EPA FY18 Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training (EWDJT) Grants - This notice announces the availability of funds and solicits proposals from eligible entities, including nonprofit organizations, to deliver Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training programs that recruit, train, and place local, unemployed and under-employed residents with the skills needed to secure full-time employment in the environmental field. The deadline is December 15, 2017. 
 
NOAA 2018 Projects of Special Merit Federal Funding Announcement - Search grants.gov for announcement number NOAA-NOS-OCM-2018-2005389.  The funding is open to eligible coastal management programs, 2 applications allowed per CZM program; $250k max per project; focus on hazards or advancing comprehensive ocean and Great Lakes planning efforts. Proposals are due January 5, 2018. 
 
National Oceanographic Partnership Program (NOPP) 2018 Broad Agency Announcement N00014-17-S-B016 - The full proposal deadline is January 29, 2018.  
 
NOAA Coastal Hypoxia Research Program (CHRP) - This announcement solicits proposals to better understand the effects of hypoxia on the Nation's oceans, estuaries, coasts, and Great Lakes ecosystems; ecosystem services; and human communities. CHRP will support targeted laboratory and/or field studies and/or the development of quantitative predictive models or other relevant methods. The deadline is January 30, 2018.
 
Science and Restoration  Funding Calendar
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commentComment Periods

Click here to request a comment period to be shared in our next newsletter.  

DWH NRDA Restoration for Florida, Draft Phase V.2 Restoration Plan and Supplemental Environmental Assessment  - The draft plan considers land acquisition and enhancement options and proposes the Salinas Park Addition with certain recreational amenities as the preferred option. The deadline for comment is December 8, 2017.   
 
A Proposed Rule: Definition of "Waters of the United States" - Addition of Applicability Date to 2015 Clean Water Rule, is available for public comment through December 13, 2017.  
 
Mississippi's amended Multiyear Implementation Plan and 2017 State Expenditure Plan Amendment are available for public review and comment by January 15, 2018. Please visit www.restore.ms to view amendments.  
 
NOAA is encouraging public review and comment on the Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4). The deadline is January 31, 2018.

The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council has an updated website. Improvements make finding fish regulations, amendments, and meetings much easier. See their Public Hearings for updates on sea turtle release protocol, deep sea coral protection areas, and other pertinent fishery management issues.

Gulf of Mexico Alliance | 228-215-1246 | www.gulfofmexicoalliance.org 
For newsletter submissions contact Lee.Yokel@gomxa.org
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