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National Estuary Program (NEP)

Habitat Plans from the National Estuary Program

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NEP Communities Design Local Solutions for Restoring Habitat

Crew of five, installing filled rope "sausage" for shore protection along boundary between mudflats and estuarine grasses.Crew of five, installing filled rope "sausage" for shore protection along boundary between mudflats and estuarine grasses.At the 28 National Estuary Program (NEP) Study Areas around the country, local stakeholders work together to identify and prioritize the problems in their estuaries. Each NEP develops a Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP) that contains specific actions that address the whole range of environmental problems facing the estuary, including habitat loss and degradation.

These wide-ranging actions include:

  • efforts to acquire or preserve open space;
  • development of conservation easements for riparian buffer areas;
  • restoration or creation of habitats through revegetation programs;
  • efforts to improve water quality through upgrades in wastewater treatment plants, and stormwater and septic systems
  • monitoring and mapping of critical areas; and
  • public outreach and education activities.

All of these efforts are carried out through partnerships between federal, state and local agencies with assistance from private and nonprofit sectors and citizens.

Cover of NEP Habitat Protection and Restoration booklet

For highlights of specific NEP efforts, please see the National Estuary Program: Habitat Protection and Restoration booklet:

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Examples of NEP Habitat Plans

Lower Columbia River Habitat Strategy Web Page
Visit Habitat Restoration Prioritization Framework Exit to view an NEP Habitat Restoration Strategy from the Lower Columbia River Estuary Partnership.
Cover of the Land Conservation Plan for New Hampshire's Coastal Watersheds
View The Land Conservation Plan for New Hampshire's Coastal Watersheds to see an example of an NEP land conservation plan from the Piscataqua Region Estuaries Partnership.

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