Current Initiatives

Click the links below to learn more about the programs and projects we are currently working on to restore the long-term health of the estuary.

 

D'Olive Watershed:  About the D’Olive Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan- In 2007, a study was undertaken by the Geological Survey of Alabama in partnership with the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, State Lands Division to assess the impact of land use changes in the D’Olive Creek, Tiawassee Creek, and Joe’s Branch watershed. This study determined more than two- to over 200-fold greater annual sediment loads in most of these streams when compared to natural geologic erosion rates (without human impact or alteration). In 2009, a contract was awarded to Thompson Engineering to draft a Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan for the D’Olive, Tiawassee, and Joe’s Branch watershed with a coalition of local stakeholders, the D’Olive Watershed Working Group, serving as an advisory board. When complete, the Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan will identify corrective measures necessary to reduce negative water quality impacts in this highly developed watershed.

 

Mon Louis Island  With shoreline property owners investing thousands of dollars to protect and restore a shoreline impacted by erosion not only from hurricanes like Ivan and Katrina but also from the daily impacts of ship wakes, MBNEP has secured funding to implement the first living shorelines project along multiple private properties.  The goal is to employ living shorelines technologies, including installation of wave-attenuating reef structures, to create and enhance habitat while protecting intertidal areas from the impacts of wave energy.  Other goals include shaping policy to favor environmentally friendly shoreline stabilization methods as alternatives to shoreline armoring.

 

Three Mile Creek (TMC)  Mid-twentieth century, flood control-related construction of a bypass channel on TMC between current MLK Avenue and Conception Street Road in the City of Mobile diverted flow from the meandering, historic stream segment, subsequently rendering a 1,800-ft section non-navigable and stagnant by siltation.  A 2008 U. S. Army Corps of Engineers Section 1135 Environmental Assessment recommended restoring flow into that stream segment by excavating sediment and removing woody debris.  After discussions with local contractors and regulatory agency personnel, both the costs and the negative environmental impacts to the surrounding woody wetlands associated with conventional bucket excavation presented obstacles to implementation.  However, spray dredging and thin layer disposal, technologies increasingly utilized to enhance subsiding marsh areas, provide a solution to this problem.  Sediment dredged from the creek bottom to restore natural conditions and dimensions can be sprayed in a thin layer over surrounding woody wetlands, mimicking the effects of regular deltaic flooding and enhancing existing plant communities without disrupting hydrology.

 

Eight Mile Creek  With a Watershed Management Plan for Eight Mile Creek recently completed, MBNEP and partners that include the City of Prichard, Auburn University, and Prichard Environmental Restoration Keepers (PERK) are restoring a degraded stream that borders Jackson Reading Park in Whistler.  Auburn University is providing engineering design and landscape guidance; the City of Prichard is providing equipment and labor for invasive species removal, excavation, and grading; and PERK is leading community involvement and cleanup efforts.

 

Local Restoration Partnerships  In 2010, MBNEP initiated the Local Restoration Partnership Program, providing grants to local public government entities  to undertake projects that address wetlands restoration, stormwater Runoff, or sediment management measures.  

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