FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Local Organizations Release Draft Plan to Improve and Protect West Fowl River
The Mobile Bay National Estuary Program (MBNEP), in partnership with Dewberry Engineering, Inc., has completed the draft of the West Fowl River Watershed Plan. Visit the West Fowl River Watershed page on the MBNEP website (http://www.mobilebaynep.com) to view and download the plan and appendices. The draft plan will be open for public comment until May 1st. All comments should be directed to Christian Miller firstname.lastname@example.org
In 2016, the MBNEP contracted with Dewberry Engineering to prepare a comprehensive watershed management plan for the West Fowl River Watershed. The purpose of the plan is to guide watershed resource managers, policy makers, community organizations, and citizens to protect the chemical, biological, and cultural integrity of the West Fowl River Watershed. Specific goals are to protect and preserve the waters and habitats that support healthy populations of fish, shellfish, and wildlife and to provide for recreation in and on these waters of coastal Alabama.
Completion of a comprehensive watershed management plan involves collaborative efforts from numerous sources. A Steering Committee comprising diverse stakeholders was created to guide the planning process. The Committee, a coalition of federal, state, and local agencies; county and local governments; business groups and commercial interests, property owners and developers; and civic and environmental groups, worked to identify issues and prioritize solutions.
The watershed management team identified excessive stormwater runoff, pathogen/bacteria, pollutants, sedimentation, shoreline erosion, habitat loss, and trash as critical issues affecting the health of the greater West Fowl River Watershed. The identified management measures to address these issues include: promote coastal habitat protection and conservation, reduce litter, reduce pathogens/pollutants/nutrients, reduce sedimentation, improve best management practices, implement low impact development, and improve resilience and access. A working group developed these management measures and goals to tackle these priorities in a systematic way and target identified funding sources for project implementation.
Since 2010, the MBNEP has expanded its work promoting wise stewardship of the waters, species, and living resources of the watersheds within the Mobile Bay drainage basin. Preparation of the West Fowl River Watershed Management Plan was made possible by collaborative funding provided by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund through the MBNEP.