Up to $36 million available nationwide for fish-passage projects

October 20, 2023

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has made $36 million available for fish-passage and river restoration projects nationwide. The grants are part of a broader $2 billion, five-year initiative to restore aquatic ecosystems funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL).

The current round of funding will help communities address outdated, unsafe or obsolete dams, culverts, levees and other impediments to the nation’s rivers and streams. It is available through the National Fish Passage Program, which works to remove in-stream barriers so fish and other aquatic species can feed, migrate and reproduce freely. The deadline to submit a letter of interest is Nov. 17.

Specifically, the National Fish Passage Program prioritizes projects that:  

  • Maximize benefits to priority species and habitats.
  • Provide sustainable fish passage.
  • Leverage regional or watershed priorities for habitat restoration, fish passage or aquatic connectivity.
  • Support or engage with disadvantaged communities.

Already this year the program has awarded $35 million to support projects across 22 states. Out of these, seven projects are focused on removing dams. One such project is the removal of the Ela Dam in Whittier, N.C. This project has received $4 million in funding and aims to restore 549 miles of the Oconaluftee River watershed.

Government Market News Staff

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