FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 30, 2006
Contacts: Ben Sherman, NOAA, (301) 713-3066
John Butler, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, (202) 857- 0166
NOAA AND NATIONAL FISH AND WILDLIFE FOUNDATION AWARD $3 MILLION FOR CORAL REEF CONSERVATION GRANTS
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and NOAA's Coral Reef Conservation Program announced today the funding of 26 grants totaling more than $3 million through the jointly managed Coral Reef Conservation Fund. The grants will go to conservation organizations and local governments in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea to help prevent further negative impacts to reefs by educating local communities and improving management effectiveness.
Coral Fund projects build public-private partnerships, increase community awareness and provide solutions to localized threats to coral reefs and associated habitats. Special emphasis is placed on projects demonstrating a hands-on, measurable approach to reducing land-based pollution, improving the management of coral reef protected areas or installing mooring buoys to protect reefs from anchor damage.
The 26 grants were awarded to projects in 11 countries, three U.S. territories, and five U.S. freely associated states. The awards include $1.1 million in federal funds leveraged by an additional $2.1 million in matching contributions for a total of $3.2 million in on-the-ground projects. Funding partners include the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Harold K.L. Castle Foundation, targeting coral conservation in Hawaii.
"From the U.S. Caribbean to Micronesia, these projects will help local communities protect their valuable coral reefs and the economies that depend on them," said retired Navy Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Jr., Ph.D., under secretary of commerce and NOAA administrator. "NOAA is pleased to continue this partnership with the foundation, federal agencies, and many other partners to advance cooperative conservation of coral reefs in the U.S. and internationally."
"We're pleased to support projects that address coral reef conservation across the globe for a sixth year," said foundation executive director Jeff Trandahl. "These grants are designed to identify and address the greatest threats to these very important and fragile marine habitats. Working at the community level, such as through Hawaii makai watch volunteers, local citizens will be monitoring reefs to reduce degradation along the state’s coastlines."
The Coral Reef Conservation Fund was created to assist NOAA in implementing the Coral Reef Conservation Act of 2000, and is managed by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation in partnership with the NOAA Coral Reef Conservation Program. To date, the foundation has awarded more than $15 million in federal and non-federal matching funds for 166 coral conservation projects in 35 countries.
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation will be accepting Coral Reef Conservation Fund proposals for 2007 beginning in November, 2006. Some of the priorities identified for 2007 funding include: increasing the effectiveness of coral reef/marine protected areas; reducing impacts from land-based pollution and sedimentation; reducing impacts from recreational uses, tourism, and boating; and reducing impacts from over-exploitation of coral reef resources. Coral Reef Conservation Fund application directions and forms will be available online at http://www.nfwf.org/programs/coral.cfm. For more information about the program, e-mail Michelle Pico at email@example.com.
NOAA's Coral Reef Conservation Program is a partnership between the NOAA line offices working on coral reef issues, including the NOAA Ocean Service, NOAA Fisheries Service, NOAA Research and the NOAA Satellite and Information Service. The program supports effective management and sound science to preserve, sustain and restore valuable coral reef ecosystems.
Each year, NOAA awards approximately $900 million in grants to members of the academic, scientific, and business communities to assist the agency in fulfilling its mission to study the Earth’s natural systems in order to predict environmental change, manage ocean resources, protect life and property, and provide decision makers with reliable scientific information. NOAA’s goals and programs reflect a commitment to these basic responsibilities of science and service to the nation for the past 35 years.
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation is a nonprofit organization established by Congress in 1984 and dedicated to the conservation of fish, wildlife and plants, and the habitat on which they depend. The Foundation creates partnerships between the public and private sectors to strategically invest in conservation and the sustainable use of natural resources. The Foundation has provided funding to over 7,200 projects, leveraging $305 million in federal dollars to more than $1 billion in total funding for on-the-ground conservation.
2006 Coral Fund grant recipients:
Enhancing Makai Watch Coral Conservation, Community Conservation Network
Talking Trash in Majuro, Marshall Islands Conservation Society
Pride Campaign for Coral Conservation in Micronesia, Rare
Grouper Spawning and Rearing Assessment, The Nature Conservancy
Capacity for Marine Conservation in Micronesia II, Micronesia Conservation Trust
Coral Reef Pollution Reduction in A.S., The Coalition of Reef Lovers – American Samoa
Evaluating Fish Nursery Habitat for MPAs, San Diego State University Research Foundation
Coral Reef Fish Rehabilitation in the Philippines, Reef Check
Sustainable Management at Helen Reef, Community Conservation Network
Caribbean/ Mesoamerican Projects:
Linking Herbivory to Reef Resilience, University of Maine
Mesoamerican Reef Cruise Tourism Impact Reduction, Conservation International Foundation
Love the Lagoon: Good Mate/Clean Marinas in Simpson Lagoon, Environmental Protection in the Caribbean
Multi-stakeholder Management Plan for Sosua Marine Park, Counterpart International, Inc.
Exuma Land and Sea Park Mooring Project, Bahamas, Bahamas National Trust
Coral Reef Sustainable Destination Program-Cozumel, Coral Reef Alliance
Coral Reef and Seagrass Conservation in Guatemala's MPA, Fundacion Mario Dary Rivera
Establishment of a Marine Protected Area on Andros Island, The Nature Conservancy
Coral Reef Education and Sustainable Tourism Development, Caribbean Student Environmental Alliance
Ensuring the Effective Management of East End Marine Park, The Ocean Conservancy
Coral Reef Nursery and Reef Restoration, Miami FL, University of Miami
Pedro Bank Coral Reef, Wildlife & Fisheries Management, The Nature Conservancy
Information Sharing on Mesoamerican Coral Reefs, Rainforest Alliance, Inc.
Erosion Control Strategies for the Fish Bay Waters, Island Resources Foundation
Saba National Marine Park: Protection of Coral Reefs, Saba Conservation Foundation
Socio-economic Training and Monitoring in the MAR, World Wildlife Fund
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On the Web:
Coral Reef Conservation Fund - http://www.nfwf.org/programs/coral.cfm
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation – http://www.nfwf.org
NOAA Coral Reef Conservation Program – http://www.coralreef.noaa.gov
NOAA – http://www.noaa.gov
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