Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA): NRDA was the beginning of the legal process. The Oil Pollution Act authorizes certain federal agencies, states and tribes, to evaluate the impacts of oil spills through the Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) and to seek funding from responsible parties as well as develop and implement restoration. The MS Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) Executive Director, Gary Rikard, was appointed as the state’s natural resource trustee by the Governor of Mississippi. Director Rikard and MDEQ, as the lead agency, have the regulatory authority to assess damages to natural resources and to collect compensation for those injured natural resources and associated services lost.
Mississippi NRDA Overview Including List of Early Restoration Projects: http://www.restore.ms/nrda-2/
Environmental Law Institute NRDA Overview: ELI NRDA Overview
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF): In early 2013, a U.S. District Court approved two plea agreements resolving the criminal cases against BP and Transocean. The agreements direct a total of $2.544 billion to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) to fund projects benefiting the natural resources of the Gulf Coast that were impacted by the spill. Over the next five years, NFWF’s newly established Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund will receive a total of $1.272 billion for barrier island and river diversion projects in Louisiana, $356 million each for natural resource projects in Alabama, Florida, and Mississippi, and $203 million for similar projects in Texas.
Mississippi NFWF Overview including list of Mississippi projects: http://www.restore.ms/national-fish-and-wildlife-foundation/
Environmental Law Institute NFWF Overview: ELI NFWF Overview
RESTORE Act (Resources And Ecosystem Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, And Revived Economies Of The Gulf Coast States Act): The RESTORE Act, signed into law July 6th, 2012, established a mechanism for providing funding to the Gulf region to restore ecosystems and rebuild local economies damaged by the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. The RESTORE Act dedicates 80 percent of any civil and administrative penalties paid under the Clean Water Act in connection with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill to the Trust Fund for ecosystem restoration, economic recovery, and tourism promotion in the Gulf Coast region. The RESTORE Act established the Restore Council, an independent entity charged with developing a comprehensive plan for ecosystem restoration in the Gulf Coast (Initial Comprehensive Plan Aug 2013), as well as any future revisions to the Comprehensive Plan.
Mississippi RESTORE Act Projects: http://www.restore.ms/ms-restore-proposals/
Environmental Law Institute RESTORE Overview: ELI RESTORE Overview
Mississippi’s on-line portal for proposal submission for Restore, NRDA, NWFW: www.restore.ms