David O'Neill, 202-857-0166
Cheryl Irwin, 202-857-0166
Washington, D.C., August 12, 2013 -- The Department of the Interior has selected the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) to administer the $100 million Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resiliency Competitive Grant Program.
Funded by the Hurricane Sandy disaster relief appropriation, the competition will fund projects that promote resilient natural systems while enhancing green spaces and wildlife habitat in needed areas along the Sandy-impacted landscape, enabling coastal communities and key habitats to withstand the impacts of future storms.
NFWF will support the Interior Department in funding projects throughout the region affected by Hurricane Sandy that includes Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, and West Virginia. These projects will research, restore and rebuild wetlands, beaches and other natural features that protect densely-populated coastal areas, and will safeguard communities, species and ecosystems from future storm damage.
In the coming weeks, NFWF will launch a competitive grant program to award funding for these projects.
“It’s critical that this funding be allocated wisely and with most impact possible so that communities can rebuild stronger and better able to withstand the next storm,” said Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell. “NFWF has a strong track record, and I look forward to working with them on this open competition that will attract and inspire innovative ideas to promote coastal resilience and enhance our nation’s natural defense systems.”
“With our partners at the Department of the Interior and its Bureaus, we will work to restore natural resiliency in the states devastated by Hurricane Sandy,” said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. “We will make sure these funds are used effectively, efficiently and transparently to help ecosystems recover and to protect coastal ecosystems and populations from future storms.”
NFWF will help Interior conduct outreach and workshops to develop a strategic program that aligns with ongoing State, City and local efforts and Interior efforts. NFWF will work to leverage the $100 million with other funding sources to better rebuild, restore and research natural defense systems.
The Interior Department’s Executive Council will select projects for funding based on criteria and a process developed by Interior’s Strategic Sciences Group and project evaluation conducted by a panel of federal technical experts. NFWF will not select grant recipients. The program criteria will incorporate infrastructure resilience guidelines recommended by Secretary Donovan’s Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force.
For more information, visit www.nfwf.org/hurricanesandy