Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Gulf Coast Recovery Plan is Out!

The White House Gulf Coast Recovery Plan was released today. The plan created by Navy Secretary Ray Mabus's commission urges Congress to:

1) dedicate a large amount of the Clean Water Act penalties to the Gulf Coast; create fund for these monies;

2) establish a Gulf Coast Recovery Council to administer the fund. Include state and federal co-chair. Council would focus on environmental restoration, economy, and public and mental health. Would work w/ NRDA trustee council to ensure coordination. EPA Secretary Lisa Jackson will head this Council.

3) dedicate a smaller percentage of CWA penalties directly to Gulf states so that they can jump start their restoration efforts immediately.


Secondary Recommendations:

--Encourage a private response effort in tandem w/ federal/state efforts

-- Make changes to Coastal Impact Assistance Program (CIAP). Currently fund has $600M.

-- President will sign Executive Order to create a Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Task Force to ensure a smooth transition from response to recovery efforts. Lisa Jackson will head the Task Force.


Comments on report: public@who.eop.gov The report is available at:


http://www.restorethegulf.gov/sites/default/files/documents/pdf/gulf-recovery-sep-2010.pdf

Thanks to Jill Mastrototaro of Sierra Club's New Orleans office for helping to keep us all in the loop.

Phil Compton, Sierra Club FL Regional Office, St. Petersburg