Governor Bentley announces funding for coastal restoration projects

Governor Bentley at the announcement of funding for new coastal restoration projects. (Office of Governor Robert Bentley)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — On Wednesday, Governor Robert Bentley announced plans for Alabama to receive nearly $100 million in funding for proposed coastal restoration projects.

The projects are a part of restoration projects already underway following the BP Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill.

“The Alabama Gulf Coast is one of our greatest natural treasures, and we are committed to restoring and strengthening our coast,” Governor Bentley said on Wednesday. “These projects are designed to strengthen our natural habitat while also encouraging more visitors to explore our beautiful beaches.”

The Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) Early Restoration process will provide the funding for the proposed projects.

BP and Alabama’s federal and state partners joined together during the negotiation process..

Both the NRDA Trustee Council and BP have approved the projects.

The proposed projects approved for funding include Gulf State Park enhancements, oyster reef restoration in Mobile County and swift tract living shoreline in Baldwin County.

“This is an ongoing effort, and our efforts will continue to see that all of the injuries we have sustained are properly addressed,” Governor Bentley said.

The funding was negotiated separately from Alabama’s pending lawsuit against BP and does not release BP from any claims for monetary damages done to the state.

Copyright 2013 WIAT-TV CBS 42

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