Members of the public shared their ideas about broad restoration types to restore the Gulf following the Deepwater BP oil spill at scoping meetings that took place in March and April. The scoping meetings are part of the Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement process.

The meetings provided the public an opportunity to comment on the types of restoration projects they would like used to offset the potential impacts to natural resources–and the human uses of them–caused by the BP oil spill.

More than 500 citizens attended the meetings, 10 of which were held throughout the Gulf Coast states and one of which was in Washington, D.C. They addressed the co-trustees in the ongoing Natural Resource Damage Assessment that has followed the disaster.

NOAA and the Department of the Interior, Department of Defense and states of Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas received comments from citizens from all walks of life, who made their voices heard at the meetings. The comments covered a broad range of restoration types, and included calls to:

  • restore coastal wetlands
  • improve management and monitoring of fisheries stocks
  • obtain lands that contain key wildlife habitats
  • procure conservation easements
  • purchase water for in-stream flows
  • strengthen barrier islands and dunes, and
  • improve recreational access, among many others.

These meetings represent the first of several significant opportunities for citizens to engage in the restoration planning process designed to compensate the public for the impacts to natural resources caused by the BP oil spill.

The trustees look forward to hearing from more members of the public during this initial scoping period. You can submit a comment online until May 18.