RAE applauds NOAA investments in coastal resilience, community building
On June 29, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Administrator, Dr. Rick Spinrad, and additional NOAA staff announced a new round of transformational grant programs totaling almost $3 billion as part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The new programs will go a long way in addressing urgent needs along our coasts to combat the adverse impacts of climate change and improve engagement in underserved and tribal communities.
“Restore America’s Estuaries is happy to see this critical funding hit the ground and make significant improvements in climate readiness and resilience in coastal communities – particularly underserved communities and tribal nations” said Daniel Hayden, President of Restore America’s Estuaries. “Investments of this scale in our coastal infrastructure and communities will go a long way towards advancing nature based solutions and supporting the robust coastal economy.”
Per a 2021 Report produced by RAE, estuary regions account for only 4% of the landmass in the continental U.S. but are home to 40% of the population and contribute 47% of the U.S. GDP. Particularly, tourism and recreation, shipping and commerce, and national security all depend on healthy and resilient estuaries – industries that will directly reap the benefits of these new funding streams.
The new funding programs will specifically address the key issues of climate ready coasts ($1.467 billion), climate data services ($904 million), marine debris and removal, and fisheries and protected resources ($592 million).
Here are a few of the programs included in today’s announcement:
- Transformational Habitat Restoration and Coastal Resilience Grants ($85 million)
- Coastal Habitat Restoration and Resilience Grants for Underserved Communities ($10 million)
- Coastal Zone Management Habitat Protection and Restoration Grants ($35 million)
- National Estuarine Research Reserve System Habitat Protection and Restoration Grants ($12 million)
- Marine Debris Removal ($56 million)
- Marine Debris Challenge Competition ($16 million)
- Marine Debris Community Action Coalitions ($3 million)
These new programs will accompany the recently announced $65 million and $12 million competitive grant opportunities, respectively, from NOAA aimed at improving fish passage.
NOAA received a total of $2.96 billion in the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. You can read more on these new funding opportunities and priority areas here.
For inquiries, please contact Rob Shane, Communications Manager for RAE.