WASHINGTON, April 14, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Fish & Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) has announced the second round of grants from its Recovered Oil Fund for Wildlife, created after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill to protect and restore Gulf species. The grants follow successful projects carried out in 2010 and will support 22 new projects to bolster fish and wildlife populations affected by the spill, including shorebirds, waterfowl, marsh birds, sea turtles, marine mammals, oysters and fish.
The awards represent $6.85 million in new investments, which will be matched by a total of $3.3 million from the grantees and other contributors.
"Following the oil spill, NFWF responded with immediate actions that put vital conservation projects on the ground and realized substantial benefits for wildlife," said Jeff Trandahl, NFWF's executive director. "In our second round of grants, we're expanding our investments in the region to support additional species. Many of these projects, such as habitat enhancement and bycatch prevention, not only address immediate needs but will continue to boost Gulf wildlife populations long into the future."
The new projects are expected to improve sea turtle hatchling success across 56 miles of priority Florida beaches; increase the capacity of marine mammal and sea turtle treatment facilities; restore 3.5 miles of oyster reefs that will in turn protect sensitive coastal habitat, and reduce bycatch of sea turtles as well as recreational and commercial fish.
NFWF's Recovered Oil Fund for Wildlife was established with proceeds from BP's share of net revenue from oil recovered from the Deepwater Horizon site. To date, BP has donated $22 million to the Fund. All BP contributions to the Fund are voluntary, and will not be used to offset any liability that BP may have for natural resource damages resulting from the Deepwater Horizon incident.
In 2010, NFWF grants in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida and Texas catalyzed the creation of more than 500,000 acres of additional habitat for millions of birds migrating through the Gulf and significantly offset the spill's impacts on the sea turtle population. The grants were funded by $8.8 million from the Recovered Oil Fund for Wildlife and an additional $2.5 commitment from Walmart. For the second round of funding, $100,000 in support is also being donated by Southern Company. A portion of the Recovered Oil Fund for Wildlife is being held in reserve for conservation needs in the Gulf in the months to come.
For more information on Phase I projects, visit www.nfwf.org.