Restoring coastal ecosystems in Southeast New England
In 2018 and 2019, the U.S. EPA Southeast New England Program (SNEP) Watershed Grants, a program administered by RAE, awarded more than $6.5 million in grants to 25 partnerships throughout Rhode Island and Southeast Massachusetts, funding a diversity of important projects. In Narragansett Bay, funding supports a network of real-time water quality monitoring buoys; in Falmouth, MA, an innovative project to return abandoned cranberry bogs to natural wetlands and streams; and on Martha’s Vineyard, cutting-edge technology to reduce pollution from groundwater before it enters coastal waters. With continued support from the U.S. EPA, RAE will guide millions more in federal investments in 2020 and 2021, helping these communities tackle pressing coastal challenges. Photo: Cranberry bog restoration underway, Inter-fluve
Community conservation in the Gulf Coast region
What started as a National Estuaries Week program evolved in 2019 to encompass volunteer restoration projects throughout the fall and spring planting seasons. Funding provided by CITGO enabled the re-imagined Caring for Our Coasts Gulf Region Grants Program. Grants provided the opportunity for high school students in Alabama to learn about salt marsh habitats and participate in native plantings, while in Louisiana, community members were offered the chance to join interpretive trail hikes before participating in invasive tree removal. The true value of this program is seen not only through direct conser-vation impacts, but also through the local engagement by Gulf Coast communities. By creating environmental stewards, we are securing a healthy future for these habitats and their surrounding region well into the future. Photo: Volunteers plant native species in Texas, Woodlands Conservancy
Our new partnership
RAE was selected to administer the National Estuary Program Coastal Watersheds Grant Program by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. This is a new, nationally competitive grants program that will provide approximately $4 million in funding over four years to projects that strive to improve the waters, habitats, and living resources within watersheds across the country. The first round of grants will be awarded in 2020. “This cooperative agreement is the first of its kind and solidifies the partnership between EPA and non-governmental organizations as we work together to improve the health of our coastal waters.” – Andrew Wheeler, EPA Administrator
Check out our 2019 Accomplishments Report to learn more about our work in the previous year.