Tag-Archive for » Environmental Consultant «

March 23rd, 2013 | Author:

The Marine Sanctuary Committee has changed the Marine Sanctuary Plan to replace the Phase III observation pier with a more realistic and promising set of projects.  The projects have already been documented, and submitted for funding consideration with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) which is administering funds associated with the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill disaster.  The projects  are referenced within the DEP project system as  SR 26 and SR 27 and already have county concurrence.  Both projects  and the updated sanctuary  plan are summarized on the Plans and Documents page of our website.  SR 26 provides for additional beach dune walkovers and equipment wash down stations to encourage and  increase access and ease of transportation for park visitors with scuba equipment, kayaks, or other similar beach equipment. SR 27 is a project to permit and fully populate a 1 mile by 2 mile near shore artificial reef area approximately 1 mile south of the Navarre Beach shore.  Costs for the projects are estimated at approximately $1.8 Million.

Bob Boston will be spearheading the effort for both permitting and funding of the projects.  The Marine Sanctuary Committee has already committed $6,000 to develop permit applications and that work is currently underway with our Environmental Consultant.

Here’s to  keeping Navarre Snorkelicious!

August 20th, 2011 | Author:

The Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE)  received a positive response from NOAA on the required section 7 consult for ALL of our Gulf and Sound Side reef area permits.  This means National Marine Fisheries Service of NOAA agrees with the biological assessment written by Keith Johnson of Wetland Sciences (our environmental consultant).    The action indicates we have cleared the final large hurdle with the only step left being the creation by the ACOE of the permit conditions.  The conditions basically dictate what we can and can not do within the permit area such as materials allowed, setback distances, etc.    As of August 11th There is currently only one permit ahead of us in that process.  The Marine Sanctuary permit conditions  will be drafted next.  After the conditions are written and approved by the  ACOE, they will be issued to Santa Rosa County.   The final approval is expected without delay once the conditions are written.  These final steps are expected to be complete with permits in hand within six weeks (September).

The Marine Sanctuary Committee is working with Santa Rosa County on finalizing the implementation plan so that process may begin as soon as permits are in hand.

January 17th, 2011 | Author:

Reports from the recent Escambia Marine Advisory Committee meeting indicates the gulf side snorkeling reef permits have been amended to allow shorter pilings (the same length planned for the Navarre site).  This clears the way for the deployment of the eco system reefs off of Pensacola beach near Portofino towers.    It is welcome news for the Navarre Beach reef effort since the design of the reef structures is identical to those planned for Pensacola Beach.  Tests from the piling manufacturer that showed the shorter pilings are actually stronger than the originally planned longer pilings were instrumental in the decision.

Also at the meeting, it was noted that Escambia county is proceeding with reef permits for the same type of reefs at Perdido Key.  With Perdido Key, Pensacola Beach, and Navarre Beach  all having beach accessible snorkeling and diving reefs a Snorkeling Trail is a real possibility and looks to be within our grasp.

According Keith Johnson of  Wetland Sciences, the environmental consultant for the Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary Committee the federal permits for the Navarre reef sites are working their way through the process.   A  realistic projected date for having the permits in hand is  June 2011.    Construction and deployment of the reefs and the planned informational kiosk type signs is expected to cost between $160k and $200K.   The Marine Sanctuary Committee is raising funds for the effort and plans to rollout a reef sponsorship campaign this spring.  Also several grants have been and continued to be pursued to fund the project.

To find out more about the physical and financial progress of the project come to the monthly committee meeting January 31st at 6 PM in the conference room of the Navarre Visitor Information Center (Hwy 98 at the Navarre Beach Bridge).

January 17th, 2010 | Author:

Next Meeting:
Our next monthly meeting will be Tuesday, January 26th at 6 PM in the Navarre Visitor Center Conference Room (enter through rear sound side door please).  As always the public is welcome and encouraged to attend.  We  look forward to building on the successes of last year by continuing to inform the public about the economic, environmental, and educational benefits of the reef program and Making Navarre Snorkelicious!


Fundraising:

Reef Sponsorship Program
After input from discussion at our December meeting, a draft of the final plan for a Reef Sponsorship Program has been developed.   Information  and plans will be presented at our January meeting.

Grants
Our application for an International Paper Foundation  Grant with a focus on environmental education was submitted this month.  We continue to research grant opportunities.

Run for the Reef 2010
It is time to start planning our Second Run for the Reef.  We are looking for a volunteer to chair this committee.  This was our major fundraiser for 2009.  With what we learned, it can be even bigger in 2010.

Permitting:
We are pleased to be on track for successful completion of permitting.  Santa Rosa County BOCC submitted the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit applications in August 2009, and our environmental consultant is in the process of responding to the first round of comments.  We are on track to meet the projected 8 -14 month time frame of approval for the ACOE permits which would place the projected permit approval date between April and October 2010.

Community Awareness:
On January 2nd we set up our information booth at the Gulf Coast Kayak Fishing Association Rigging Clinic at Hot Spots Bait and Tackle in Gulf Breeze.  This was a great opportunity to explain how the artificial reef and  marine sanctuary will benefit all  marine life in the area.
A presentation to the Navarre Beach Yacht Club is scheduled for their February 1st general meeting , 7pm at Juana’s.

Community awareness is very important to keep this project moving forward.  We continue to look for opportunities to make appearances at local civic organizations and set up and informational booth or table at events.  Committee members are encouraged to step forward to both schedule/coordinate these opportunities and to help by manning a booth or table or presenting our (now fairly standardized) presentation.

Agenda for Marine Sanctuary Monthly Meeting – January 26, 2010 at 6pm

1.      Leadership roles for 2010

2.      Fundraising:
a.   Reef Sponsorship Program
b.  Grants
c.     2010 Run for the Reef (pre planning, prime sponsor recruiting, etc)

3.    Permitting Update

4.    Community Awareness:  Recent and Future events or speaking engagements