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As a trustee for coastal resources, NOAA protects and restores habitats injured by hazardous waste sites, oil spills and vessel groundings.   RSS Feed RSS Feed
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Biologists collect mussel samples to
measure impacts from the oil spill.

Biologists collect mussel samples to
measure impacts from the oil spill.

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Refugio Beach Oil Spill - What Happens Next?

July 14, 2015 - Oil is being cleaned up from the shoreline and beaches are beginning to reopen following the Refugio Beach Oil Spill that took place in Santa Barbara County on May 19, 2015. At the same time, NOAA along with many other state and federal trustee agencies are in the process of collecting data that will help determine the extent of injuries to fish, birds, marine mammals, habitats, and human uses as a result of the oil spill.

In a recent newsletter prepared by the trustee agencies, we outline all of the steps in the Natural Resource Damage Assessment process and provide links to agency websites for more information. You can also sign-up to join our email list to receive the latest news and updates on our progress.


Scotchman Creek Restoration Site

Scotchman Creek Restoration Site

Draft Amended Restoration Plan for Galaxy/Spectron, MD Site Issued for Public Comment

On July 10, 2015, NOAA, on behalf of the Natural Resource Trustees, issued a Draft Amended Restoration Plan for the Galaxy/Spectron Site, in Cecil County, Maryland. The purpose of this amended restoration plan is to make the environment and the public whole for injuries resulting from the release of hazardous substances by implementing restoration actions.

The trustees propose to modify the Final Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment for the site, completed in June 2008, in order to use the habitat restoration funds from previous settlements to assist with a dam removal project in Baltimore and Howard Counties, Maryland. The public comment period on this plan ends on August 10, 2015. To submit your written comments, please contact: Mary Andrews at NOAA, 410 Severn Avenue Suite 207A, Annapolis, MD 21403 or email at:


Scientists assess impacts to mussel shells in Kalamazoo River.

Scientists assess impacts to mussel
shells in Kalamazoo River.

Enbridge Must Restore Environment Injured by 2010 Kalamazoo River Oil Spill

On June 8, 2015, NOAA along with our fellow Trustees announced a natural resource damage settlement with Enbridge that will result in multiple resource restoration projects along the Kalamazoo River and will require Enbridge to pay an additional sum of nearly $4 million. The settlement addresses environmental injuries caused by the 2010 rupture of Enbridge's Line 6B pipeline in Michigan that resulted in one of the largest inland oil spills in United States history. Trustees arrived at the settlement in conjunction with a comprehensive settlement between the State of Michigan and Enbridge.

The settlement, was filed in federal court, provides funding to the Trustees to conduct natural resource restoration, reimburses agencies for assessment and restoration costs, and incorporates additional requirements from the state settlement for Enbridge to conduct restoration and monitoring.

Learn more about how this settlement will result in the Kalamazoo River restoration.


Scientists collect data on the potential impacts of the oil and response efforts to fish.

Scientists collect data on the
potential impacts of the oil
and response efforts to fish.

NOAA Update on the Santa Barbara Oil Spill

June 8, 2015 - NOAA is continuing to respond to the oil spill that resulted from a pipeline break at Refugio State Beach, near Santa Barbara, California, on May 19, 2015. The pipeline break released approximately 21,000 gallons into the Pacific Ocean, threatening the rich marine resources along the Southern California coast.

NOAA has been providing overflight observations of the spill, and information on fate and effects of the crude oil. As part of the Natural Resource Damage Assessment process we are establishing what species and parts of the environment have been exposed to oil or may be impacted by response activities. Field teams have documented dead fish, invertebrates and wildlife in the oiled areas, and collected dozens of samples of mussels, sand crabs, fish, water, and oil for future analysis.


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