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NOAA News Releases 2004
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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration awarded a $853,125 grant to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation as part of a multi-project partnership to restore habitat vital to the conservation of the nation’s coastal fisheries. NOAA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

The new three-year partnership award will continue efforts, which began in 2001 between NFWF and the NOAA Community-based Restoration Program. Funding will enable restoration projects benefiting coastal habitats. Projects improve fisheries by providing nursery areas and food sources for commercially and recreationally fished species. The partnership’s objective is to implement on-the-ground habitat restoration projects that restore marine, estuarine and riparian habitats. These habitats may include salt marshes, seagrass beds, oyster reefs, coral reefs, mangrove forests, shellfish beds and freshwater spawning and rearing habitats in streams and rivers.

“This partnership between NOAA and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation will fund valuable projects and initiatives that help restore the health of our coastal and marine resources,” said retired Navy Vice Adm. Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. “NOAA’s goal of healthy coastal habitats and vibrant coastal communities is greatly enhanced when there is strong local stewardship of the habitats that support our fisheries resources.”

“NOAA has continued to be a vital partner in the effort to restore coastal habitats for fish and other marine life, and we're grateful for their support,” said John Berry, executive director of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. “This grant will help expand four significant grant programs that support on-the-ground restoration projects benefiting marine, estuarine and riparian habitats that are home to many important species.”

Funding from the habitat restoration partnership is distributed nationally and regionally through a series of NFWF funding initiatives: Five Star Restoration Challenge Grant Program, Chesapeake Bay Small Watershed Grants, Delaware Estuary Grants Program, and the North Gulf Coast Initiative. NFWF will continue to work with a variety of local, state and federal agencies, including NOAA Fisheries to identify and implement habitat restoration projects through these four initiatives. Past projects funded through the NOAA/NFWF Habitat Restoration partnership include dam removal projects in New England, oyster reef restoration in the Chesapeake Bay, and riparian restoration in Alaska.

The NOAA Restoration Center uses a community-based restoration program to work with organizations and government to support locally driven habitat restoration projects in marine, estuarine and riparian areas. NOAA funds on-the-ground habitat restoration projects that offer educational and social benefits for citizens and their communities and provide long-term ecological benefits for fishery resources. Since 1996, over 800 projects in 26 states have been implemented using NOAA funding and leveraged funding from national and regional habitat restoration partners. For more information on the Community-based Restoration Program, please visit:

Each year, NOAA awards approximately $900 million in grants to members of the academic, scientific and business communities to assist the agency in fulfilling its mission to study the Earth’s natural systems in order to predict environmental change, manage ocean resources, protect life and property, and provide decision makers with reliable scientific information. NOAA goals and programs reflect a commitment to these basic responsibilities of science and service to the nation for the past 33 years.

NOAA is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources. To learn more about NOAA, please visit

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