201D Nov 29, 2018 Oral Abstracts
Water Quality 09:30 AM - 09:45 AM

The Mobile Bay National Estuary Program was awarded an EPA Healthy Watershed Grant to advance strategic protection of healthy habitat parcels in Mobile-Tombigbee and Alabama River basins. These river basins contain 75% of the first and second order stream catchments that eventually drain into Mobile Bay and have large effects on the water quality and ecological health of the entire bay, estuary, and coastal Alabama waters. The program proposes to develop a Mobile Basin Habitat Atlas identifying healthy, headwater habitat parcels in AL portions of HUCs 0315 and 0316. A detailed, parcel-specific GIS analysis has been initiated to identify and prioritize parcels of significant environmental value as determined by specific criteria. This Atlas will be vetted by forestry resource managers and key upper basin stakeholders will be engaged in the Atlas development process. This Atlas will then be utilized by the Alabama Forest Resources Center, a local land trust, to identify landowners amenable to selling or putting their land under conservation easement with a goal protecting 10,000 acres of headwater habitats over the two year period of the grant. Long-term, the program will place 100,000 acres of identified priority headwater habitats in protection via acquisition or conservation easement over a period of five to 10 years. This grant is providing an opportunity to be strategic in land conservation to meet environmental goals and will accelerate the protection of important headwater land of the Mobile Bay Basin.

Moffatt & Nichol
Moffatt & Nichol


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