WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Gulf of Mexico Program awarded $285,744 in grants to the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana to help restore the swamp forest habitat near the City of New Orleans.
“Protecting and restoring our coast is critical to Louisiana’s future, our economy, our way of life, and our ability to be protected from future storms. In the Trump Administration, our state has an ally that understands the urgency of this need, and I’m pleased that they have partnered with the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana to help rebuild roughly 25 acres of our coastal wetlands,” said House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (LA-01). “While there is much more work to be done, this grant is an important step in fighting back against the coastal erosion that takes more than a football field of land from Louisiana each hour. I will never stop fighting restore Louisiana’s coast.”
“The Gulf of Mexico is recognized worldwide as waterbody with significant economic and ecological value—and coastal Louisiana is an integral part of the Gulf ecosystem,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “This grant will help protect and restore the habitat along the Louisiana coast.”
“We must continue to be proactive in our efforts to protect and restore the diversity of Louisiana’s Gulf Coast,” said EPA Regional Administrator Anne Idsal. “Grants like these ensure that not only Louisiana retains the value of this important resource, but all five Gulf of Mexico States and the nation.”
“This award is more recognition of how important the Louisiana coast is to our nation. Our coast is an economic engine for the country and an ecological treasure. Restoring it should be a national priority and it is great to see this acknowledgement of its urgency,” said Rep. Cedric Richmond (LA-02).
“Louisiana’s coast is a critical resource to our state, and this announcement is great news. The Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana plays an important role in coordinating volunteer efforts, which benefit our overall mission to preserve coastal lands. This is a welcome investment, which follows recent news from the Department of the Interior that GOMESA revenue-sharing provisions will return $82 million to Louisiana. These resources will go a long way in implementing the Coastal Master Plan and funding critical infrastructure projects across Louisiana’s coast,” said Rep. Clay Higgins (LA-03).
“Louisiana’s coast is important not only for our state, but for the nation as a whole. If we fail to preserve it, we jeopardize the safety and security of those who live in the area, the many industries that depend on our coast, and the critical ports that help transport goods throughout the country,” said Rep. Mike Johnson (LA-04). “I am grateful the EPA has realized the importance of our coastal restoration efforts, and I will continue to work with all the stakeholders to make meaningful advancements for our state.”
“It’s always a good thing when federal funds can be invested back home. This grant will engage the community and help us work together to restore coastal areas in Louisiana that we all treasure,” said Rep. Ralph Abraham (LA-05).
“CRCL is a steadfast partner in Louisiana’s coastal efforts whose use of this grant will, importantly, help engage the ever-growing number of our citizens wanting to be more involved in the fight to restore our coast and protect communities,” said Rep. Garret Graves (LA-06). These funds will be leveraged along with other resources and volunteers to help plant thousands of trees, strengthen our natural hurricane defenses and restore critical habitat along our coast.”
This grant will also provide opportunities for approximately 300 volunteers who will help to add 5,000 or more native swamp forest trees and restore or enhance at least 25 acres of cypress-tupelo swamp habitat.
The Gulf of Mexico Program began in 1988 to protect, restore and maintain the health and productivity of the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem in economically sustainable ways. Funded by EPA, the program is a non-regulatory, inclusive consortium of state and federal government agencies, representatives of the business and agricultural community, fishing industry, scientists, environmentalists, and community leaders from all five Gulf States.