The first Florida project funded under the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Early Restoration Projects will soon be underway in Escambia County after a groundbreaking ceremony was held Friday at the Galvez Boat Ramp.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection has issued a â€śNotice to Proceedâ€ť for the replacement of existing docks.
NRDA Construction Project Consultant Pearce Barrett, P.E represented the Department at the event, alongside Escambia County Commission Chairman Wilson Robertson, Escambia County District 2 representative Gene Valentino, County Project Manager Matt Mooneyham and Marine Resource Manager Robert Turpin.
â€śThe Deepwater Horizon oil spill had a major effect on the human usage of our coastal resources,â€ť said Mimi Drew, special advisor to DEP Secretary Hershel T. Vinyard, Jr. â€śThis project is the first of many remaining steps towards rejuvenating our coastal communities.â€ť
The project will replace the existing docks with three new, larger docks. The funding for this and future projects is part of a $1 billion agreement between the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Trustees and BP Oil Company in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill two years ago. Pursuant to the â€śFramework for Early Restoration Addressing Injuries Resulting from the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill,â€ť BP provided $1 billion for implementation of early restoration projects as an initial step toward fulfilling its obligation to fund the complete restoration of natural resources impacted by the spill.
Escambia County submitted more than $200 million in projects to the Natural Resources Trustee Council along with the state of Florida. Escambia County has received $5 million to date.
Dredging Today Staff, August 27, 2012