FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Aja Sae-Kung
News Releases 2005
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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration awarded the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries a $1,434,000 grant to study and restore oyster populations damaged by Hurricane Ivan in 2004. NOAA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce.
The grant funds the Oyster Resource Improvement Project, which aims to restore the oyster population and habitat to pre-Ivan conditions. The project is divided into three areas of work: performing a comprehensive survey of bottom water from selected areas of public oyster seed grounds east of the Mississippi River, rehabilitating Louisiana’s oyster resources and oyster reefs that were damaged during Hurricane Ivan, and documenting the development of new oyster resources through monitoring reef growth and conditions in estuarine areas.
“It’s very important that we take a good look at the damages done by Hurricane Ivan to the oyster populations. This grant money will help scientists study the effects of the hurricane and will allow us to work toward restoring this important food source to the American people,” said Dr. Bill Hogarth, assistant administrator for NOAA Fisheries. “The work performed by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, NOAA, and the academic and scientific communities is an example of the combined effort that provides critical support for cooperative conservation activities. NOAA and the Bush administration are committed to improving our understanding of the environment and supporting oyster recovery efforts in Louisiana.”
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 35 years.
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