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Fisheries Habitat Restoration Projects Earn Grant Funding

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) recently announced the selection of 25 projects that will receive funding for the restoration, enhancement and protection of anadromous salmonid habitat in California watersheds.

The grants, which total $11 million, were awarded through CDFW’s Fisheries Restoration Grant Program (FRGP). The FRGP was first established in 1981 and since 2000 has included funding from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund, established by Congress to reverse the declines of Pacific salmon and steelhead throughout California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Alaska.

“As California continually feels the effects of climate change, rising sea levels, prolonged drought, more extreme temperatures and extreme precipitation events, restoring degraded river ecosystems is more important than ever before,” CDFW Director Charlton H. Bonham said. “These FRGP funded projects will help restore the refugia salmonids need.”

In response to the 2022 Fisheries Habitat Restoration Grant Solicitation, CDFW received 50 proposals requesting more than $38 million in funding. As a competitive grant program, proposals underwent a rigorous technical review process which included CDFW and NOAA scientists.

The 25 approved projects will further the objectives of state and federal fisheries recovery plans, including removing barriers to fish migration, restoring riparian habitat, recovering wildfire impacts detrimental to rivers, and creating a more resilient and sustainably managed water resources system (e.g., water supply, water quality and habitat) that can better withstand drought conditions. These projects further the goals of California’s Water Action Plan and CDFW’s State Wildlife Action Plan, as well as addressing limiting factors specified in state and federal recovery plans.

The list of approved projects is available on the FRGP website.