Get Involved in Restoring the Gulf
Restoration scoping is the first opportunity for your input into the process of restoring the Gulf. The objectives of the scoping process are to:
Planting marsh vegetation.
- Identify and engage interested parties
- Identify public and agency concerns regarding potential restoration alternatives
- Identify reasonable restoration options
- Establish a public record of the decision making process
The scoping period and public meetings are now complete, but you can still make your voice heard by submitting a project idea. You can learn more by reviewing the public scoping document. You can also see the comments we received during the scoping period. All of the comments and project ideas we receive will be reviewed by NOAA and the other agencies as we develop a restoration plan for the Gulf.
Click on the sections below to learn more about the scoping process and how we are working to develop a restoration plan.
What Is Restoration Scoping for the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill?
Scoping, as defined by the Council on Environmental Quality, is an “early and open process for determining the scope of issues to be addressed, and for identifying the significant issues related to a proposed action.” The information gained from this process will be incorporated into a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS)
that will consider appropriate restoration types to pursue as part of the Natural Resources Damage Assessment (NRDA)
for the Deepwater Horizon spill.
Why is Restoration Scoping Being Conducted?
Under the Oil Pollution Act
, the NRDA provides for a public restoration planning process for the development of a project-specific restoration plan. Because a full restoration plan is based on a completed injury assessment, the restoration scoping process at this point is broad; it is focused on the exposure of natural resources to oil, rather than specific impacts. The injury assessment follows a stepwise evaluation process (oil release -> pathway -> exposure -> injury), which will be the basis for scoping the final restoration plan once assessment is completed.
What are the Benefits of a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement?
The purpose of a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) is to develop a framework for restoration. Considering the complexity and far-reaching potential impacts of the spill, it is important to conceptualize restoration at a broad scale to help identify how to best restore resources across the region. The emphasis of a PEIS is on developing a broad environmental program and a plan that would apply to future projects, the details and locations of which are yet unknown. The PEIS will also serve as the foundation for future analyses required by the National Environmental Policy Act.
What Natural Resources Were Exposed to Oil?
Natural resources, including fish, wildlife, and habitat, were exposed to oil and dispersants as a result of the Deepwater Horizon spill. As detailed in work plans and data posted online
, injury assessment teams have been evaluating exposure and impacts to the following resources:
- terrestrial organisms
- shorelines (wetlands, beaches, and mangroves)
- submerged aquatic vegetation
- fish, including shellfish (e.g., oysters)
- marine mammals and sea turtles
- aquatic life found in sediment
- shallow water corals
- water column
- deep water communities
- human use of natural resources
The objective of the PEIS is to inform the trustees how to pursue restoration across a broad spectrum of natural resources.
Examples of Restoration Types:
Scoping for the PEIS focuses on broad categories of restoration, with different types of restoration projects for each category. For example (a partial list):
|Categories of Restoration
||marsh creation, oyster reef restoration, or barrier island and beach restoration
||creation of land conservation or preserves
|specific resource protection or rehabilitation
||bird and turtle nest protection, coral protection and transplanting, sea grass revegetation