Groups Commend Congress on Restore Act
Legislation restoring Gulf Coast ecosystems and economy included in transportation bill
Emily Guidry Schatzel
Local and national conservation groups have issued the following joint statement in response to the Senate and House inclusion of the RESTORE Act in the Surface Transportation Extension Act. Consistent with recent findings from two independent commissions, the RESTORE Act dedicates 80 percent of the Clean Water Act fines from BP and other parties responsible for the 2010 Gulf oil spill to restoring the Gulf Coast environment and economy.
“We applaud the transportation bill conferees and the Gulf Coast Senators and Representatives for making Gulf Coast restoration a priority by including the RESTORE Act in their final bill,” said Environmental Defense Fund, National Audubon Society, National Wildlife Federation, The Nature Conservancy, Ocean Conservancy and Oxfam America. “The RESTORE Act will help revitalize the entire region by ensuring the bulk of the fines collected from those responsible for the spill are directed back to the area that suffered so much harm.”
“Funding from the RESTORE Act will help the ailing Gulf Coast as well as the entire nation. Our economy depends on a healthy Gulf – it is where roughly 40 percent of America’s domestically caught seafood is produced, and billions of dollars in goods flow in and out of its ports every year. It is also home to some of the nation’s most at-risk wetlands, socially vulnerable communities and richest natural resources. This legislation will not only restore ecosystems and communities, it will also help create jobs and boost our economy.”
“We look forward to seeing the RESTORE Act cross the finish line in Congress and working with the states and Administration to ensure that every dollar is used to help restore the Gulf and increase the resiliency of its ecosystems and communities. Passage of the RESTORE Act would be an affirmation by the nation that the Gulf of Mexico is a valuable economic and ecological resource that benefits all Americans.”
Read more about the largest investment in wildlife conservation in American history