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The Louisiana Regional Restoration Planning Program
(RRP Program)


Purpose of Regional Restoration Planning

Improve the efficiency of restoration through a proactive and collaborative planning effort.

Identifying regions within the program will facilitate tracking of cases, settlement accounting, and oversight of assessment and restoration-related activities. The boundaries of the four coastal regions are based on the Coast 2050 Plan regions, and the boundaries of the five inland regions are based on the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ) defined watersheds. The role of natural resource trustees is to restore natural resources held in public trust which have been injured by the release of or threat of release of oil, thereby compensating the public for the lost resources and/or services resulting from the incident.

State of Louisiana and federal natural resource trustees have developed a statewide Regional Restoration Planning Program (RRP Program) to assist the natural resource trustees in carrying out their Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) responsibilities for discharges or substantial threats of discharges of oil (referred to as an “incident”). A Regional Restoration Plan (RRP) will be prepared for each of nine regions in the State of Louisiana.

The goals of this statewide RRP Program are to:

  1. Expedite and reduce the cost of the NRDA process;
  2. Provide for consistency and predictability by describing in detail the NRDA process, thereby increasing understanding of the process by the public and industry; and
  3. Increase restoration of lost trust resources and services.

Attainment of these goals will serve to make the NRDA process as a whole more efficient in Louisiana. Furthermore, implementation of the RRP Program will allow the state to better coordinate restoration being conducted through NRDA with other on-going restoration efforts in the State of Louisiana.

The development of the RRP Program has been a coordinated effort between state and federal natural resource agencies, local governments, and the public. The RRP Program is jointly administered and used by the trustees to assist in carrying out their natural resource trust mandates under OPA and OSPRA.

To view a complete list of documents associated with the Louisiana RRP Program Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS), please visit the Administrative Record.



RRP Program Summary

The Louisiana RRP Program identifies the statewide program structure, the decision-making process, and the criteria that will be used to select the restoration project(s) that may be implemented to restore the natural resources injured by a given incident. Specifically, the program defines, expands, and/or refines the following important components of the existing NRDA process:

Potentially Injured Resources/Services

The RRP Program defines those trust resources and services in Louisiana that are likely to be or are anticipated to be injured (i.e., at-risk) by incidents as “potentially injured trust resources and services.” Pre-identification of these “potentially injured trust resources and services” will facilitate the development of the RRPs and assist in the coordination of response activities by informing agency personnel who are participating in the incident response (i.e., clean up) of trust resources and services that may be of greatest concern to the trustees. The “potentially injured trust resources and services” are defined under three broad categories: coastal, inland, and statewide.

Coastal

  • Herbaceous Wetlands More Info
  • Forested Wetlands More Info
  • Beaches/Shorelines/Streambeds More Info
  • Oyster Reefs (and Other Reefs) More Info
  • Water Column Organisms More Info

Inland

  • Herbacous Wetlands More Info
  • Forested Wetlands More Info
  • Beaches/Shorelines/Streambeds More Info
  • Upland Vegetation More Info
  • Water Column Organisms More Info

Statewide

  • Birds More Info
  • Wildlife More Info
  • Recreational Resource Services More Info
  • Cultural Resource Services More Info

Restoration Types

The RRP Program identifies restoration types that are appropriate for the restoration of injuries for each of the identified “potentially injured trust resources and services” in the RRP Program. These restoration type categories are:

Creation/Enhancement of Habitat More Info

  • Creation/Enhancement of Coastal Herbaceous Wetlands More Info
  • Creation/Enhancement of Coastal Forested Wetlands More Info
  • Creation/Enhancement of Coastal Beaches/Shorelines/Streambeds More Info
  • Creation/Enhancement of Coastal Oyster Reefs (and Other Reefs) More Info
  • Creation/Enhancement of Coastal Submerged Aquatic Vegetation More Info
  • Creation/Enhancement of Inland Herbaceous Wetlands More Info
  • Creation/Enhancement of Inland Forested Wetlands More Info
  • Creation/Enhancement of Inland Upland Vegetation More Info
  • Creation/Enhancement of Inland Beaches/Shorelines/Streambeds More Info

Physical Protection of Habitat More Info

  • Physical Protection of Inland Herbaceous Wetlands More Info
  • Physical Protection of Coastal Forested Wetlands More Info
  • Physical Protection of Coastal Beaches/Shorelines/Streambeds More Info
  • Physical Protection of Coastal Herbaceous Wetlands More Info
  • Physical Protection of Inland Beaches/Shorelines/Streambeds More Info
  • Physical Protection of Inland Upland Vegetation More Info
  • Physical Protection of Inland Forested Wetlands More Info

Acquisition/Legal Protection of Resources and Services More Info

  • Acquisition/Legal Protection of Coastal Herbaceous Wetlands More Info
  • Acquisition/Legal Protection of Coastal Forested Wetlands More Info
  • Acquisition/Legal Protection of Coastal Beaches/Shorelines/Streambeds More Info
  • Acquisition/Legal Protection of Coastal Oyster Reefs (and Other Reefs) More Info
  • Acquisition/Legal Protection of Inland Herbaceous Wetlands More Info
  • Acquisition/Legal Protection of Inland Forested Wetlands More Info
  • Acquisition/Legal Protection of Inland Beaches/Shorelines/Streambeds More Info
  • Acquisition/Legal Protection of Inland Upland Vegetation More Info

Stocking of Fauna More Info

  • Stocking Coastal Water Column Organisms More Info
  • Stocking Oysters (and Other Reef Organisms) More Info
  • Stocking Inland Water Column Organisms More Info
  • Stocking Birds More Info
  • Stocking Wildlife More Info

Physical Protection of FaunaMore Info

  • Physical Protection of BirdsMore Info
  • Physical Protection of WildlifeMore Info

Restoration of Recreational Resource Services More Info

Restoration of Cultural Resource Services More Info

The RRP Program describes the specific restoration type(s) in each restoration type category that is appropriate for the restoration of injuries to each of the identified “potentially injured trust resources and services” in the RRP Program. This determination of the range of appropriate restoration types is based on a nexus analysis. More Info The trustees have also conducted an environmental consequences analysis by evaluating impacts of implementation of restoration techniques on the restoration types. Carrying out both analyses in the FPEIS will result in both technical process and NEPA compliance efficiencies at the case level during the Restoration Planning Phase. The trustees will be able to use relevant analysis and information from the FPEIS and RRPs to produce the incident(s)-specific DARPs and environmental assessments.

The trustees have also developed restoration type selection criteria to assist in determining which of the various restoration types identified is most appropriate to restore the trust resources and services injured during a given incident. It is anticipated that the criteria will also provide a level of predictability to the public and affected parties regarding restoration project selection. Furthermore, projects in each RRP will be classified by restoration type to facilitate the selection of specific restoration projects based on the type of trust resources and services injured. This approach will streamline the process of evaluating and selecting preferred restoration project(s) to be reviewed by the public.

Settlement Alternatives

The RRP Program describes a number of additional case settlement alternatives to assist the trustees and RPs in negotiations to resolve RP liabilities for incidents. These additional settlement alternatives generally represent different ways of resolving liability from an incident under one or the other (or both) of the two options: RP-implemented restoration or RP cash settlement and trustee-implemented restoration. More Info These settlement alternatives also may provide opportunities for implementing restoration projects more quickly and cost-effectively, pooling settlements to implement larger projects than could otherwise be accomplished by using individual settlements, and, potentially, facilitating implementation of more ecologically significant projects.

Additional Settlement Alternatives

  • RP CO-OP More Info
  • RP/Fund CO-OP More Info

Screening Criteria

In order to improve the consistency, predictability, and accountability of the NRDA decision-making process, the trustees identified and defined project selection and other screening criteria to be used in implementing the Louisiana RRP Program, including:

  • Selection of restoration projects to be incorporated into each RRP More Info
  • Selection of most appropriate restoration type(s) to restore the injured trust resources and services in a case More Info
  • Project selection screening of specific restoration actions required for a case More Info


Regional Restoration Plans (RRPs)

The RRP Program established nine regions for which regional plans will be developed. There are four coastal regions based on the Coast 2050 Plan regions and five inland regions based on LDEQ’s defined watersheds.

For each region, an individual RRP will be produced. Each RRP identifies the trust resources and services that could potentially be affected by an incident and the restoration alternatives that have been identified to date for implementation within that region.

Regional Boundaries for the RRP Program (Figure/Map) - Click here

State and federal trustees continue to solicit restoration projects for potential inclusion in the nine RRPs. Restoration projects will be included in the Plans based on RRP Program selection criteria. For instructions on how to submit restoration projects, please download the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Restoration Project Information Sheet.



Summary of Program Benefits

The RRP Program, including the RRPs, is intended to benefit the public, industry, and natural resource trustees by:

  • Providing greater opportunities to restore injuries to trust resources and services;
  • Expediting restoration of injured trust resources and services from incidents;
  • Reducing the cost of restoration planning and implementation;
  • Pooling of individual case recoveries to maximize opportunities for implementation of larger, more ecologically significant restoration projects;
  • Providing for more consistency and predictability by describing in detail the NRDA process, thereby increasing the understanding of that process by the public and industry;
  • Improving coordination between restoration activities under the NRDA mandates and other restoration efforts in the state;
  • Enhancing the capability for trustees to restore trust resources and services injured by incidents for which there is no viable RP;
  • Maximizing opportunities for partnering among RPs, trustees, and other public and private restoration efforts; and
  • Increasing opportunity for public participation in the NRDA process through pre-incident planning.

The trustees will periodically review the implementation of the RRP Program in the context of the benefits described above, in order to identify opportunities for improvement. In addition, the trustees are committed to identifying, developing, and using innovative operational tools and methods that will achieve the intended benefits of the RRP Program.

Opportunities for public involvement will continue to be provided throughout the development of the remaining RRPs and implementation of the RRP Program



Partnering Agencies

U.S. Department of Commerce(USDOC)/National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

U.S. Department of the Interior (USDOI)

Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ)

Louisiana Department of Natural Resources (LDNR)

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF)



Related Links

NOAA Damage Assessment and Restoration Program

RRP Program FPEIS

Region 2 Plan

Project Submittal Form (from DWH site)


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Herbaceous wetlands are primarily salt, brackish/intermediate, and fresh marshes located in or near the coastal zone and alluvial basin. The marshes of the Mississippi River delta complex and other similar areas in Louisiana support a mix of freshwater, estuarine, and marine species. These wetlands are vital habitat for various fish, mammals, and resident and migratory birds. As considered here, this category includes marsh plants and the invertebrates, bacteria, algae, and sediments associated with the vegetation that contribute to all marsh habitat functions.

Forested wetlands are wetland areas dominated by woody vegetation. They usually consist of an overstory of large trees, an understory of young trees or shrubs, and an herbaceous layer. As considered here, this category includes the trees, understory vegetation, soils, closely associated invertebrates, and the services that this habitat provides to other trust resources.

Unvegetated beaches and shorelines in coastal waters include the perimeters of headlands, barrier islands, estuaries and bays, tidal mudflats, and river deltas. This zone begins at the lowest part of the intertidal zone and extends into the supratidal zone. As considered here, this injury category includes the invertebrates that burrow and/or live in this habitat. It encompasses all ecological functions performed by this habitat, including, among others, primary production by benthic diatoms in the intertidal zone and secondary production by grazers, but does not include human recreational services.

Streambeds include wetlands and all water channels, which are defined by Langbein and Iseri (1960) as natural or artificial open conduits either naturally or artificially that periodically or continuously contain moving water, or that form a connecting link between two bodies of standing water. Streambeds containing flowing water include: seasonally flooded, temporarily flooded, intermittently flooded, irregularly exposed, regularly flooded, irregularly flooded, seasonal-tidal, or temporary-tidal water regimes (Cowardin et al. 1979). As considered here, this injury category includes the substrate (soils/sediments and hard surfaces) and closely associated invertebrates, and includes all ecological functions performed by this habitat (Cowardin et al. 1979).

This category considers living reefs in marine and estuarine waters. As considered here, living reefs encompass oysters, mussels, and/or other benthic organisms that contribute to the reef structure, and the fauna and flora that attach to or are closely associated with these reefs. It also includes all ecological services this habitat provides to other trust resources.

As considered here, this category consists of both planktonic (including larval fish) and nektonic organisms, such as fish that live in fresh water streams, ponds, swamps, and lakes. It also includes the ecological services these organisms provide to other trust resources.

Inland herbaceous wetlands are environments that experience periodic flooding and are comprised of emergent vegetation having little or no woody tissue. This definition refers specifically to the inland geographic areas where freshwater flow regimes prevail throughout the year and saltwater does not typically penetrate from the coast. These wetlands support a diverse group of fish, invertebrates, reptiles, amphibians, birds, and mammals. As considered here, this category includes marsh plants and the invertebrates, bacteria, algae, and sediments associated with the vegetation that contribute to all marsh habitat functions.

Forested wetlands are characterized by woody vegetation that is at least 18.5 feet tall. They occur in freshwater systems and normally possess an overstory of tall/mature trees, an understory of young trees or shrubs, and an herbaceous layer. Specific examples of this habitat in Louisiana are wetland forest (evergreen, deciduous, and mixed) and swamp. As considered here, this category includes the trees, understory vegetation, soils, closely associated invertebrates, and the services that this habitat provides to other trust resources.

Unvegetated beaches and shorelines in coastal waters include the perimeters of headlands, barrier islands, estuaries and bays, tidal mudflats, and river deltas. This zone begins at the lowest part of the intertidal zone and extends into the supratidal zone. As considered here, this injury category includes the invertebrates that burrow and/or live in this habitat. It encompasses all ecological functions performed by this habitat, including, among others, primary production by benthic diatoms in the intertidal zone and secondary production by grazers, but does not include human recreational services.

Streambeds include wetlands and all water channels, which are defined by Langbein and Iseri (1960) as natural or artificial open conduits either naturally or artificially that periodically or continuously contain moving water, or that form a connecting link between two bodies of standing water. Streambeds containing flowing water include: seasonally flooded, temporarily flooded, intermittently flooded, irregularly exposed, regularly flooded, irregularly flooded, seasonal-tidal, or temporary-tidal water regimes (Cowardin et al. 1979). As considered here, this injury category includes the substrate (soils/sediments and hard surfaces) and closely associated invertebrates, and includes all ecological functions performed by this habitat (Cowardin et al. 1979).

As defined in the Louisiana GAP analysis program (USGS 2001), this category includes agricultural-cropland-grassland, dense pine thicket, upland shrub/scrub (deciduous, evergreen, and mixed), and upland forest (deciduous, evergreen, and mixed). It encompasses trees, as well as, understory vegetation, soils, and invertebrates in the soil or associated with plants, and the services this habitat provides to other trust resources.

As considered here, this category consists of both planktonic (including larval fish) and nektonic organisms, such as fish that live in fresh water streams, ponds, swamps, and lakes. It also includes the ecological services these organisms provide to other trust resources.

Birds located permanently or seasonally in all coastal and inland areas are included in this category (see Chapter 2.0, Affected Environment). This category can also include the ecological services birds provide to other trust resources.

Mammals, reptiles, and amphibians from all habitats in all coastal and inland areas are included in this category (see Chapter 2.0, Affected Environment). This category can also include the ecological services mammals, reptiles, and amphibians provide to other trust resources.

Human recreational resource services are provided by habitats and/or areas throughout the state and offshore within the EEZ. Indirect activities (e.g., hiking, biking, picnicking, or jogging) and direct activities (e.g., bird and wildlife viewing, hunting, fishing, boating, or swimming) are included in this category. This category does not, however, include the resources themselves that are involved in the activity.

Cultural resource services is a broad term that includes prehistoric, historic, architectural, and traditional cultural services that flow from natural resources that have cultural attributes. Cultural resources in Louisiana include lands, buildings, monuments, travel routes, ship wrecks, burial sites, ceremonial sites, battle grounds, Indian mounds, middens, and other artifacts, generally in excess of 50 years of age, that represent the history and culture of the region as perceived by the public or cultural scientists. While all state and local historic preservation groups may contribute to the list of state cultural resource sites or attributes, the Louisiana State Preservation Office, state Indian tribes, and USDOI are primarily responsible for designating Louisiana’s cultural resource sites and attributes. Biological resources can have cultural significance and values under specific conditions. The loss or injury of a biological resource that has cultural significance and value would constitute not only a natural resource injury, but a loss of cultural resource services as well. Therefore this category includes all cultural resource services that natural resources in the state may provide.

As considered here, this category consists of both planktonic (including larval fish) and nektonic organisms, such as fish that live in fresh water streams, ponds, swamps, and lakes. It also includes the ecological services these organisms provide to other trust resources.

Creation of a habitat includes the physical construction of a habitat, such as a marsh or reef and planting of submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) on a non-vegetated waterbottom. Enhancements include hydrological changes to improve a habitat through the creation of a crevasse or water diversion; or any habitat manipulation that benefits a species, for example, providing nesting sites, increasing the food base, and reducing predation.

This restoration type consists of actions intended to create a coastal marsh or enhance the provision of marsh services from an existing marsh. There are many different methods that can be used to create a marsh, including depositing dredged material at an elevation suitable for marsh vegetation and then planting marsh vegetation following the dewatering or compaction of material, constructing a crevasse in a river levee allowing a marsh splay to form, and terracing to protect marsh from wave action and facilitate the increase of waterbottom elevation through the deposition of sediment and organic matter. An example of an action designed to enhance marsh service flows would be increasing hydrologic flow into an existing marsh with poor circulation to augment utilization by marine organisms and growth of marsh vegetation.

This restoration type consists of actions designed to provide additional areas of forested wetlands or enhance the provision of services from an existing forested wetland to other trust resources. Planting hardwoods along cheniers and ridges is an example of a project to create forested wetlands. An example of an action designed to enhance forested wetland service flows would be increasing hydrologic flow into an existing forested wetland with poor circulation to augment utilization by marine and estuarine water organisms, such as gapping spoil banks or introducing fresh river water into a swamp.

This restoration type consists of actions designed to provide additional areas of beaches/shorelines/streambeds or enhance the provision of services from existing beaches/shorelines/streambeds to other trust resources. Installing a hard structure to trap sediment, thus forming additional area of beach, is an example of coastal beach creation. Enhancement actions could include such methods as removing debris along the beach and/or shoreline that limit the habitat value of the beach.

Enhancement actions for streambeds could include such methods as removing debris that limit the habitat value of a streambed. Regrading or recontouring previously altered streambeds is another alternative for enhancement.

This restoration type consists of actions designed to produce reef habitat or to enhance the productivity of, and services provided by, an existing reef. A project such as the placing of hard substrates in an area suitable for oyster survival in a configuration designed to allow oysters or other reef-forming organisms to settle is an example of reef creation. A water quality improvement project that enhances the productivity of an existing oyster reef is an example of an enhancement action.

Construction of an artificial reef, such as increasing hard structure on the seafloor or water column, to allow colonization by encrusting organisms and provide habitat for reef fish is an example of a project of this restoration type. Other actions designed to create artificial reefs or to increase the productivity of an existing reef are also classified in this restoration type.

This restoration type consists of actions designed to create a new bed of SAV or enhance the productivity of an existing bed. Planting seagrasses in a bare area is an example of a project to create SAV. A water quality improvement project that reduces turbidity and enhances the productivity of an existing seagrass bed is an example of an enhancement action.

This restoration type consists of actions to create herbaceous wetlands or enhance the provision of services from an existing wetland to other trust resources. Planting fresh marsh vegetation in a bare area is an example of a project to create herbaceous wetlands. An example of an action designed to enhance inland herbaceous wetland service flows would be increasing hydrologic flow into an existing herbaceous wetland with poor circulation to augment utilization by fresh water organisms and growth of the vegetation. Adding nutrients to herbaceous wetlands with low productivity is another method of enhancement.

This restoration type consists of actions designed to provide additional areas of forested wetlands or enhance the provision of services from an existing forested wetland to other trust resources. Planting bald cypress or overcup oak in a bare area is an example of a project to create forested wetlands. An example of an action designed to enhance forested wetland service flows would be increasing hydrologic flow into an existing forested wetland with poor circulation to augment utilization by freshwater organisms and growth of the woody vegetation.

This restoration type consists of actions designed to provide additional areas of upland vegetation or enhance the provision of services from existing upland vegetation to other trust resources. Planting longleaf pine (Pinus taeda) in a bare area is an example of a project to create upland vegetation. Enhancement actions could include such methods as mid-story thinning to stimulate wildlife utilization and growth of the upload vegetation.

This restoration type consists of actions designed to provide additional areas of beaches/shorelines/streambeds to enhance the provision of services from existing beaches/shorelines/streambeds to other trust resources. Installing a hard structure to trap sediment and form an additional area of beach is an example of inland beach creation. Enhancement actions could include such methods as removing trash that limits the habitat value of a beach. Enhancement actions for streambeds could include such methods as removing trash that limits the habitat value of a streambed. Regrading or recontouring previously altered streambeds, or bendway projects are other alternatives for enhancement.

Prevention of a particular organism or physical force from adversely affecting a habitat constitutes physical protection. Protection of a riparian habitat by fencing off cattle or creating breakwaters to reduce wave energy would be examples of physical habitat protection.

This type of restoration action involves projects designed to decrease the loss of herbaceous wetlands. Erecting fences to exclude herbivores or prevent excessive herbivory is one example of physical protection that may be implemented in inland herbaceous wetlands.

This type of restoration action includes projects designed to decrease the loss of coastal forested wetlands. The use of tree shelters around the base of trees or exclusion fences around forest tracts to prevent herbivory are examples of physical protection that may be implemented in this habitat.

This type of restoration action involves projects designed to decrease the loss of a coastal beach or other unvegetated shoreline or streambed. It may involve the placement of artificial structures or construction of some natural habitat adjacent to an existing shoreline that would reduce erosion of the substrate.

This type of restoration action involves projects designed to decrease the loss of coastal marsh. Armoring shorelines or erecting fences to exclude herbivores or prevent excessive herbivory is one example of physical protection that may be implemented in coastal herbaceous wetlands.

This type of restoration action involves projects designed to decrease the loss of a sandy beach or other unvegetated shoreline. It may involve placement of artificial structures or construction of some natural habitat adjacent to an existing shoreline that would reduce erosion of the substrate.

This type of restoration action may also involve projects designed to reduce the loss of inland streambeds. Planting fringe vegetation to reduce sedimentation into a streambed to keep it from filling in is one example of this type of restoration. Fencing off access to the streambed to prevent cattle from entering or enhancing vegetated buffers around streambeds would qualify as protection.

This type of restoration action involves projects designed to decrease the loss of upland vegetation. Laying weed mats around the base of trees to alleviate excessive weed growth in the area is an example of physical protection that can be implemented in an upland vegetated habitat. Erecting deer exclusion fencing or supporting the control of detrimental species would provide physical protection of the habitat.

This type of restoration action involves projects designed to decrease the loss of forested wetlands. The use of tree shelters around the base of trees to prevent herbivory and scouring is an example of physical protection that may be implemented in this habitat.

Acquisition or servitude of land as a buffer or protection of created or enhanced habitat is an example of restoration under this type. Acquisition or preservation of existing habitat may be a potential restoration alternative, although no increase in service flows would occur through acquisition or protection alone. Acquisition will generally be used in conjunction with other restoration types, such as creation or enhancement of habitat. Acquisition may be considered as a restoration alternative if the particular habitat has: 1) unique qualities; 2) its location is especially valuable; and/or 3) its destruction is imminent. Acquisition of a habitat or resource already afforded protection under law, such as purchase of wetlands, would not normally be considered under this restoration type. Private land owners may also be encouraged to make an easement donation to one of the many non-profit organizations in place to handle land conservation efforts. As with all restoration alternatives, trustees must first consider actions that provide services of the same type and quality, and of comparable value as those lost.

As mentioned above, acquisition of a habitat or resource already afforded protection under law, such as purchase of wetlands, would not normally be considered under this restoration type. Acquisition of this type will generally be used in conjunction with other restoration types, such as creation or enhancement of the habitat. This restoration type may also include actions that meet the three requirements listed above, such as buying imperiled tracts of herbaceous wetlands or other herbaceous wetlands in jeopardy of being developed or pursuing conservation easements to remove them from consideration for development or other anthropogenic activities. While service flows would not be increased through this alternative, areas that may otherwise stop providing services to the public and environment may remain intact and contribute toward landscape continuity.

Again as mentioned above, acquisition of a habitat or resource already afforded protection under law, such as purchase of wetlands, would not normally be considered under this restoration type. Acquisition of this type will generally be used in conjunction with other restoration types, such as creation or enhancement of the habitat. This restoration type may include actions such as purchasing tracts or pursuing conservation easements on tracts of coastal forested wetlands in jeopardy of being developed or imperiled for other reasons. While service flows would not be increased through this alternative, areas that would otherwise stop providing services to the public and environment would remain intact and continue to contribute to landscape continuity.

This restoration type would include actions such as purchasing areas adjacent to coastal beaches and shorelines (coastal beaches are public lands up to the mean high water line), or purchasing privately owned canals/streambeds. Other actions may be taken to legally protect this resource such as pursuing conservation easements, limiting access, or taking other measures deemed appropriate. While service flows would not be increased through this alternative, areas that would otherwise stop providing services to the public and environment would remain intact and contribute toward landscape continuity.

This restoration type would include actions such as buying an existing oyster lease to provide ecological services.

Again as mentioned above, acquisition of a habitat or resource already afforded protection under law, such as purchase of wetlands, would not normally be considered under this restoration type. Acquisition of this type will generally be used in conjunction with other restoration types, such as creation or enhancement of the habitat. This restoration type would include such actions as purchasing tracts of herbaceous wetland habitat that are not otherwise protected and are in imminent peril of loss to development.

Again as mentioned above, acquisition of a habitat or resource already afforded protection under law, such as purchase of wetlands, would not normally be considered under this restoration type. Acquisition of this type will generally be used in conjunction with other restoration types, such as creation or enhancement of the habitat. This restoration type would include such actions as purchasing tracts of forested wetland habitat that is not otherwise protected and is in imminent peril of loss to development.

Inland beaches/shorelines/streambeds, as considered in this section, include river, stream, and lake edges. State law, based on the land survey of 1812, states that the public (i.e., state) owns all navigable rivers and streams in the state. This restoration type would include such actions as purchasing stream edges that are not otherwise protected and are in imminent peril of loss to development.

This restoration type would include such actions as purchasing tracts of upland vegetation habitat that are not otherwise protected and are in imminent peril of loss to development.

This restoration type includes the stocking of fish, birds, or other wildlife to replenish individuals lost or injured as a result of the incident.

This restoration type is broadly defined as any action designed to directly increase the number of coastal water column organisms. Releasing fish from a hatchery to increase the species’ population is an example of this type of restoration.

This restoration type is defined as the placement of oysters or other reef organisms in an area suitable for their survival. Adult or seed oysters could be used in this type of restoration. The intent of this type of restoration is to provide oyster biomass and oyster services, apart from reef services in general.

This restoration type is broadly defined as any action designed to directly increase the number of fresh water column organisms. A project such as releasing fish from a hatchery to increase the population of that fish species is an example of this type of restoration.

This restoration type is broadly defined as any action designed to directly increase the number of birds in general or the number of a particular species or guild. A project such as releasing birds hatched and raised from eggs collected in the wild is an example of this type of restoration.

This restoration type is broadly defined as any action designed to directly increase the population of one or more wildlife species. Actions such as raising and releasing the species of wildlife injured are included in this restoration type.

An action such as fencing in an area where birds are nesting to keep predators out is an example of this restoration type. Another example would be to remove fishing line and other trash from trees and other vegetation to prevent bird injury due to entanglement. Posting signs to make the public aware of critical habitat and/or nesting seasons to protect fauna from injury or disturbance due to human use is an example of this restoration type.

This restoration type is broadly defined as any action designed to reduce stressors on bird populations. An action such as installing fences to protect nests from predators qualifies as this restoration type.

This restoration type is broadly defined as any action designed to physically protect wildlife by decreasing stressors on the wildlife population. Excluding predators from an area to reduce predation is an example of this restoration type.

The restoration of any habitat that provides the public recreational services, direct or indirect such as fishing, hiking, hunting, nature photography, and education falls under this type. This type of restoration includes actions designed to increase access to, or enhance, recreational opportunities. Stocking a lake with fish or creating an artificial reef are examples of restoration actions that would enhance the experience of recreational fishing. The construction or enhancement of structures such as fishing piers, boat ramps, and wildlife viewing areas, could also be considered restoration if it can be shown that the amenity would restore lost recreational services to the public.

Restoration of natural resource services that also have cultural resource service(s) value would be an example of restoration under this type.

According to the NRDA regulations at 15 CFR 990 et seq., trustees must consider compensatory restoration actions that provide services of the same type and quantity, and of comparable values as those lost. In the nexus analysis, restoration types are evaluated to determine how well the restoration would address the injuries to potentially injured trust resources and services affected by the incident.

If a responsible party chooses to implement a restoration project itself or through a contracted third party, the settlement calculation will consist primarily of the cost associated with the trustees’ costs to conduct the injury assessment and restoration planning, and the required trustee oversight and administrative costs for the life of the project. Costs associated with the implementation of the project, monitoring, operations and maintenance, potential corrective actions, and contingencies would remain the responsibility of the responsible party(s) as part of the settlement, but would not need to be calculated. In the case of multiple Responsible Party(s) or the Implementation of an RRP restoration project with a partnering program or organization, the settlement calculation would take into account what portion of the cost each contributing responsible party or program is responsible for. Partnering will not decrease a Responsible Party(s) liability, but may allow them to take advantage of economies of scale in implementing a larger project, thereby lowering the cost of resolving their specific liabilities.

If the responsible party(s) provides the trustees with the money to implement a specific restoration project (which was selected by the trustees with input from the Responsible Party(s) and the public by applying the Louisiana Regional Restoration Planning Program project selection screening criteria ), the settlement calculation would include the trustees’ assessment costs plus the sum of all costs to conduct the project planning and design, permitting, implementation, monitoring, operation and maintenance, oversight and administration, and contingencies for a specific project that compensates for the direct and interim losses of trust resources and services. If the Responsible Party(s) liability is less than the full amount of the project, the Responsible Party(s) can pay the trustees based on the percentage of the selected restoration project (e.g. Responsible Party/Fund CO-OP settlement alternative).

This settlement alternative provides an opportunity for RPs to partner with others to implement a restoration project identified in an RRP that is larger than their individual liability for a specific incident, thereby sharing their implementation costs (e.g., engineering and design, permitting, mobilization, and demobilization). This alternative may allow the RPs to take advantage of economies of scale in implementing a larger project, thereby lowering their costs of resolving their specific liabilities. Specifically, RPs could potentially partner to implement a larger project in a number of ways, for example: A group of RPs could jointly implement a project by pooling funds based on their specific liability; One RP could implement a project with other RPs contributing the funds based on their specific liabilities; One and/or a group of RPs could implement a project that appropriately resolves the RP's OPA NRDA liability and that is carried out in conjunction with restoration needs for other purposes (e.g., Coast 2050 restoration); or A RP with a partner(s) (e.g., other state or federal restoration programs and conservation organizations) could jointly implement a project that meets the needs of both partners and still appropriately resolves the RP's liability. Additionally, the "RP CO-OP Settlement" alternative provides an opportunity for a single RP to use one appropriately scaled project to address its liability for two or more of its own incidents.

This settlement alternative provides an opportunity to the RP(s) to implement a restoration project identified in an RRP that is larger than the specific liability for a specific incident and, therefore, cost-share the implementation costs (e.g., engineering and design, permitting, mobilization, and demobilization) with either federal OSLTF or state OSCF monies received by the trustees to resolve liability from similar incidents for which there was no viable RP or a viable RP failed to respond to a demand letter after 90 days. This settlement alternative is similar to the "RP CO-OP Settlement" alternative except that instead of the RP partnering with other parties to share the cost of a larger project, the RP cost shares the implementation of the project with the trustees using cash settlements received from the federal OSLTF and/or the state OSCF. A prerequisite for the potential use of this settlement alternative is the prior occurrence of an incident(s) for which the trustees have received partial monies to implement required restoration actions from the federal OSLTF and/or the state OSCF. This alternative may allow the RP to take advantage of economies of scale in implementing a larger project and thereby may lower their costs of resolving their specific liabilities.

1. Strong Nexus to Injuries included in the applicable RRP
2. Technical Feasibility and likelihood of success
3. Consistency with Existing Laws and Regulations
4. Listed as one of the Restoration Types identified in the applicable RRP
5. Located (at least) partially within the boundaries of the applicable RRP Region

1. Strength of Nexus to the Injury
2. Scalability
3. Degree to which restoration type addresses Multiple Injuries
4. Availability of projects for this restoration type in the RRP
5. Other case-specific parameters

1. Project Cost-Effectiveness (including ability to partner)
2. Proximity to affected area
3. Scalability
4. Extent of Benefit to Injured Trust Resources and Services
5. Technical Feasibility and Likelihood of Success
6. Avoidance of Future additional Injury resulting from the project
7. Degree to which Project Addresses Multiple Injuries
8. Degree to which Project affects Public Health and Safety
9. Ability to implement project with Minimal Delay
10. Degree to which project supports Existing Strategies/Plans
11. Project Urgency
12. Other Factors as appropriate