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Resource restoration planning process begins for BP/Deepwater Horizon oil spill
Date:9/29/2010

s, have begun to formally identify and document impacts to the gulf's natural resources, and the public's loss of use and enjoyment of these resources, as the first stage under the regulations for developing a restoration strategy. Pre-assessment data collected, analyzed and quality-checked, are available to the public on the NOAA oil spill science missions and data website and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service oil spill response website.

"Our early analysis has documented clear detrimental effects to animals and habitats in the Gulf ecosystem," said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. "While we will continue collecting and analyzing samples, the trustees also will begin crafting an equally comprehensive restoration strategy. Our goal is to forge a restoration plan that is steeped in science, sharpened by public input and strongly rooted in the public good. The citizens of the Gulf Coast deserve nothing less."

"The restoration of the Gulf of Mexico is a high priority for the entire Obama administration and we will be diligent and vigilant to ensure that the damages are fully assessed and a full and scientifically sound restoration strategy is both developed and implemented," said Tom Strickland, Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Fish and Wildlife and Parks.

Under the Natural Resource Damage Assessment process outlined by the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, the trustees have authority to identify potential restoration projects and will solicit public comment on these projects before finalizing the restoration plan. The public may also have opportunities to provide hands-on assistance in selected restoration projects.

Federal regulations, under the Oil Pollution Act, require that the responsible parties be invited to participate in the NRDA process. The trustees will seek damages to implement the final restoration plan from the parties identified as being responsible
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Contact: Ben Sherman
ben.sherman@noaa.gov
301-713-3066
NOAA Headquarters
Source:Eurekalert

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