Federal authorities fund $165 million storm-protection project - NBC40.net

Federal authorities fund $165 million storm-protection project

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GALLOWAY TWP. -

As the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy approaches, government officials visited New Jersey to make a major announcement. A project is in the works that will hopefully better protect the coast from future powerful storms.

Nearly one-year ago debris was scattered up and down all fifty miles of the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge coastline.

"Lovely things like boats that are full of fuel and other chemicals,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior, Sally Jewell. “Chemical drums and propane tanks"

But after months of clean up its finally been returned to its former beauty, recovered from the storm and full of life. Government officials want to make sure it stays that way no matter what Mother Nature throws our way.

"We are here to celebrate another important investment of funding that will increase resilience to future storms at Forsythe Refuge and many other public lands across the East Coast,” said Virginia Rettig of the Forsythe Refuge.

United States Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced funding for storm protection projects along the coast from North Carolina to New England, totaling 162 million dollars.

Jewell says the government funding will support forty-five projects in total. "Twenty-five of them will be committed to on the ground projects that will restore wetlands, marshes and beaches, as well as rebuild shore lines."

Dan Ashe, Director of U.S. Fish and Wildlife service says nine projects will focus on free water flow on rivers and streams. "By removing dams and replacing culverts we will make aquatic systems more resilient to flood surges and future storms."

Which is the ultimate goal, to ensure the entire coast is stronger than the storm, and ready for the next.

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