WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — “The Trustees and BP have identified approximately $134 million in projects to be included in the next proposed phase of early restoration,” US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) stated on Monday.
The projects will become a part of the draft Phase IV Early Restoration Plan that will be made available for public review and comment, according to the NOAA.
The programs would enhance bird nesting habitat, provide protection to sea turtles, improve nearshore and reef habitats, increase recreation opportunities on federal lands and restore fish, the statement specified.
The projects allow to jump-start the Gulf of Mexico restoration using $1 billion that BP has made available for projects related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill cleanup, according to the NOAA.
“So far, we have approved three phases of early restoration, encompassing 54 projects at an estimated cost of $698 million,” the Trustees said in the statement.
The British Petroleum Deepwater Horizon oil spill took place in 2010, when 4.9 million barrels of oil discharged into the Gulf of Mexico. The spill affected the natural habitat as well as the major fishing and tourism industries across the states bordering the Gulf of Mexico.