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​Mississippi: Becky Russell, 601-397-2134

NFWF: Cheryl Irwin, 202-857-0166

 NFWF Announces $7.5 Million for Gulf Restoration Projects in Mississippi

Projects funded as a part of initial investments of funds derived from settlement of criminal charges against BP and Transocean

[With corrected numbers, Nov. 14, 2013, 3:33 pm]

WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 14, 2013 -- The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) today announced $7.5 million for three Mississippi projects that address high priority conservation needs on the Mississippi coast. The projects, developed in consultation with the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality and federal resource agencies, are designed to remedy harm or reduce the risk of future harm to natural resources that were affected by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

The moneys are the first obligations from NFWF’s Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund, created earlier this year as part of the settlement between the U.S. Department of Justice, BP and Transocean to resolve certain criminal charges against both companies in relation to the spill.

Under the allocation formula and other provisions contained in the plea agreements, $356 million will be paid into the Gulf Fund over the next five years for conservation projects in the state of Mississippi.

Governor Phil Bryant said, "These projects address natural resources that are vital for improved habitat, enhance management of storm water runoff, and support our coastal preserve management which is an essential part of protecting our pristine coastal ecosystem.”

“Today’s announcement represents the culmination of months of work on the part of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and our partner in these important conservation efforts, the State of Mississippi. In particular, we appreciate the efforts of Trudy Fisher, Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality, whom Governor Bryant has designated as the lead representative for the state. She has worked with us to ensure these funds are directed to the highest priority conservation needs in Mississippi,” said Jeff Trandahl, Executive Director and CEO of NFWF.

In early 2013, a U.S. District Court approved two plea agreements resolving certain criminal charges against BP and Transocean related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Provisions within the plea agreements direct a total of $2.544 billion to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation over a five-year period. The funds are to be used to support projects that remedy harm or reduce the risk of future harm to natural resources that were affected by the oil spill. 

“The establishment of the Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund is a significant step forward in ongoing efforts to remedy the environmental damage caused by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. In the coming months and years, we look forward to strengthening the partnerships that will allow us to build strong consensus among stakeholders and interest groups to ensure the projects we fund have a lasting benefit to the state of Mississippi and the Gulf of Mexico,” said Trandahl.

Mississippi’s Phase I Projects

Click on the project title for more specific information:

Coastal Bird Stewardship Program

Mississippi Coastal Preserves Program

Coastal Stream & Habitat Initiative

To learn more about the state of Mississippi’s process for identifying priority Gulf Coast restoration projects, visit www.restore.ms.

To learn more about NFWF’s Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund in Mississippi, visit