On Oct. 29, the 1-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced a $100 million Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resiliency Competitive Grant Program. The program will fund the research and restoration of natural areas along the Atlantic Coast for improved storm resiliency. The grant program will be administered through the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, which began accepting proposals as of Oct. 29.
Jewell made the announcement at Dyke Marsh Wildlife Preserve, the largest remaining freshwater tidal marsh in the Washington metropolitan area. A $24.9 million project is now under way to restore the once 81-ha (200 ac) wetlands. They are receding at 183 to 244 cm (72 to 96 in.) per year due to erosion and now only 24 ha (59 ac) remain.
The $25 million restoration at Dyke Marsh Wildlife Preserve is one of 45 restoration and research projects focusing on storm surge and marshes, wetlands, and beaches. These projects will be funded by $162 million provided under the Hurricane Sandy Supplemental Appropriations Act. A portion of this funding will be used for on-the-ground projects, while $45 million will fund assessments, modeling, coastal barrier mapping, and other research to improve the ability to mitigate and reduce the impacts of powerful storms. These projects and the grant program will help deliver on the Obama Administration’s Climate Action Plan. Read more.