The federal agencies and states acting as natural resource trustees* have announced new opportunities for the public to engage in restoration planning for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. We plan to prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement, or PEIS, to evaluate the potential environmental effects of early restoration projects. We have initiated the public scoping process to assist in preparing the PEIS.
The PEIS will include an evaluation of the potential effects of restoration types—and specific projects—proposed as part of future phases of early restoration. It will also look at the cumulative impacts of early restoration.
Early restoration was initiated by the April 2011 $1 billion Framework Agreement with BP. Projects could include:
- creating or improving wetlands.
- restoring barrier islands and beaches.
- restoring and protecting bird, fish, turtle and other wildlife habitat.
- enhancing recreational experiences.
The development of the PEIS for early restoration begins with a public scoping period, from June 4 to August 2, 2013. The trustees will hold meetings—one in each of the Gulf states and one in Washington, DC. We are asking for public input on the scope, content, and any significant issues we should consider in developing the PEIS for early restoration.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
P.O. Box 2099
Fairhope, AL 36533
We initiated development of a comprehensive Gulf Spill Restoration PEIS in February 2011, and work on that PEIS is ongoing. The PEIS announced today is focused specifically and more narrowly on early restoration.
Check back often for progress updates and to submit your own restoration project ideas.
This story was originally posted on www.gulfspillrestoration.noaa.gov.
*Editor’s note: This statement originally included “Indian tribes” but no tribes are involved in this damage assessment case.