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Gulf of Mexico Alliance receives $3.9 million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding to benefit the Gulf Coast

Alliance announces 13 new projects making a positive impact on coastal ecosystems and economies

Building on NOAA’s long-standing collaboration with the Gulf of Mexico Alliance, it is inspiring to see them using Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding to implement important work.”
— NOAA Office for Coastal Management South Regional Director, Heidi Stiller
OCEAN SPRINGS, MS, UNITED STATES, February 5, 2024 /EINPresswire.com/ -- The Gulf of Mexico Alliance is investing $3.9 million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) funding from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to increase regional collaboration and support priorities identified by the five Gulf states.

Four Regional Ocean Partnerships, including the Gulf of Mexico Alliance, received two-year awards to provide much-needed capacity. The funds are being used to implement projects that improve the health of ocean and coastal ecosystems, enhance the resilience of coastal communities, and increase regional data sharing.

“This Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding gives Regional Ocean Partnerships a boost by supporting projects that benefit from a regional approach,” said Laura Bowie, Gulf of Mexico Alliance executive director. “In the Gulf of Mexico, we are laser-focused on building resilient communities, sharing priority data, and fostering good stewardship of our coastal resources.”

Thirteen new projects located across the Gulf states will focus on:
- coastal community resilience
- data accessibility and sharing
- environmental education
- habitat and water resources
- wildlife and fisheries
- marine debris

The projects began this fall and will continue through early 2025. Each project was selected to achieve goals identified in the Alliance’s Governors’ Action Plan IV for Healthy and Resilient Coasts (https://gulfofmexicoalliance.org/what-we-do/governors-action-plan/), a five-year strategic plan developed by the Gulf states in collaboration with federal agencies, universities, non-profit organizations, and industry partners.

“Building on NOAA’s long-standing collaboration with the Gulf of Mexico Alliance, it is inspiring to see the Alliance using Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding to implement important work on community resilience, water quality, enhancement of habitats, and more,” said NOAA Office for Coastal Management South Regional Director, Heidi Stiller. “The projects will support regional collaborative priorities in ocean and coastal management, as well as administration priorities on tackling the climate crisis and engaging with underserved communities.”


Information for each project is listed below:

Project Title: Resilient Communities and Affordable Housing Planning: Florida Pilot Project to Define Best Practices and New Resources
Location: Florida
Lead Institution: Florida Housing Coalition
Project Description: Engage stakeholders to integrate affordable housing policy, land use, and natural hazard vulnerability and develop an implementation guide that can be used to replicate the project in other locations across the Gulf.

Project Title: Outreach Videos for Crab Trap Loss Prevention in the Gulf of Mexico
Location: Gulfwide
Lead Institution: Lemonlight Media, Inc.
Project Description: Create videos and short social media PSAs that: 1) promote best practices for blue crab fishers to reduce gear loss and 2) provide state-specific crabbing laws and information.

Project Title: Supporting State-led Derelict Crab Trap Detection and Removal
Location: Gulfwide
Lead Institution: Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission
Project Description: Improve derelict crab trap detection and support removal programs in each of the five Gulf states to reduce mortality of blue crabs and other species due to ghost fishing.

Project Title: Analysis of Common Water Parameters
Location: Gulfwide
Lead Institution: Consolidated Safety Services Incorporated (CSS)
Project Description: Analyze the most frequently collected water quality parameters and collection methods in the Gulf Coast Monitoring and Assessment Portal and develop a stakeholder resource to support coordinated data accessibility and comparability.

Project Title: Waters to the Sea Gulf of Mexico Adventure
Location: Gulfwide
Lead Institution: Hamline University
Project Description: Create multimedia learning resources for educators and students in grades 6-12 focused on the Gulf of Mexico’s coastal environments and watersheds.

Project Title: Advancing Capacity for Marsh Modeling Retrospective Analyses
Location: Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida
Lead Institution: The Water Institute
Project Description: Model historic habitat and elevation data for three coastal marshes and engage modelers, coastal resource managers, and other stakeholders to ensure the data analyses and products meet their needs.

Project Title: Oyster Habitat Status and Trends Analysis
Location: Louisiana and Texas
Lead Institution: Freese and Nichols, Inc.
Project Description: Establish historic oyster habitat and identify data gaps, document oyster habitat trends, identify local and regional threats to oyster habitat, and develop recommendations for a region-wide oyster status and trends assessment.

Project Title: Exploring a Framework for Achieving Flood Insurance Benefits from Community-Scale Nature Based Solutions
Location: Alabama
Lead Institution: The Water Institute
Project Description: Quantify flood risk reduction benefits of a marsh restoration project and communicate results to nearby homeowners and insurance companies.

Project Title: Evaluation of Microplastics and Ecotoxins in Waterfowl
Location: Louisiana and Texas
Lead Institution: Texas A&M Agrilife Research
Project Description: Assess emerging risks to wildlife by testing hunter-donated ducks for microplastics and contamination from PFAS “forever chemicals.”

Project Title: Enhancement of Hypoxia Monitoring in the Northern Gulf of Mexico
Location: Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama
Lead Institution: Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium
Project Description: Collect nutrient data and monitor for hypoxic conditions east of the Mississippi River, expanding the annual survey area to better understand the Gulf of Mexico’s dead zone.

Project Title: Study to Define the Environmental Benefits of Dredged Sediments in Benefit-Cost Ratio Calculations
Location: Gulfwide
Lead Institution: The Water Institute
Project Description: Identify and evaluate benefits of dredged sediment used in regional sediment management projects and develop best practice recommendations to capture the value of those benefits.

Project Title: Gulf TREE Access and Maintenance
Location: Gulfwide
Lead Institution: Mississippi State University
Project Description: Enhance user access, increase security, and improve functionality of Gulf TREE, an interactive decision-support tool that connects users with the appropriate climate or resilience tool for their needs.

Project Title: Tribal Engagement Assessment
Location: Gulfwide
Lead Institution: Strongbow Strategies
Project Description: Conduct outreach to federally and state recognized tribal nations to identify opportunities for collaboration around issues that enhance the environmental and economic health of the Gulf of Mexico.

Amanda Nalley
Gulf of Mexico Alliance
+ +1 8503457597
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