As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act, we are recommending roughly $6.3 million in funding for state and tribal projects through the Species Recovery Grants Program. Over the years, the Species Recovery Grant Program has successfully supported the collaboration with states and Tribes to recover and conserve marine species under the Act. This year, we are recommending around $1.5 million for six new projects (through eight new awards) to five states, a territory, and one federally recognized tribe. Another $4.8 million will support the continuation of 20 multi-year projects that were approved in prior grant cycles.
States and tribes play an essential role in conserving and recovering species. Threatened or endangered species under NOAA Fisheries’ jurisdiction may spend all or part of their lifecycle in state or tribal waters. Successfully conserving these species depends largely on working cooperatively with states and tribes. This year’s recommended projects support our state and tribal partners in a range of activities, such as:
- Assessing and monitoring endangered and threatened species presence and status, including evaluating abundance, spatiotemporal distribution, spawning, and foraging behaviors
- Collecting demographic and genetic information to improve understanding of population structure, habitat use, and impacts of human threats
- Engaging the public in conservation of Endangered Species Act-listed species
We identified projects that would benefit the species identified in our “Species in the Spotlight” initiative as a priority in our funding decisions. Recommended and ongoing projects will address five Species in the Spotlight:
- North Atlantic right whale
- White abalone
- Atlantic salmon Gulf of Maine distinct population segment
- Southern resident killer whale DPS
- Hawaiian monk seals
This year is the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act. The Act is critical in recovering and conserving marine species, habitats, and ecosystems through the work of NOAA and our partners in science, management, and law enforcement. As we celebrate 50 years, we also look to the future and recognize the continued importance of the ESA in light of biodiversity loss and climate change.
At this point in the selection process, application approval and obligation is not final. An application being recommended is not an authorization to begin performance of the project, and is not a guarantee of funding. Final approval is subject to funding availability as well as final review and approval by both NOAA Grants Management Division and Department of Commerce Financial Assistance Law Division. No application is “awarded” until it has been signed by the official Grants Officer. The Grants Officer will notify successful applicants in writing when their application has been approved.