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Gulf Guardian Award 2001 Synopsis of 2nd Place Winners



Project #: HAB-01-20
Company: The Dow Chemical Company, Freeport TX
Project Name: Sea Center Texas
Category: Business
Project Type: Habitat
Average Rating: 16.929

Opened in 1996, Sea Center Texas is a 75-acre, modern marine hatchery, aquarium and educational center where visitors can learn more about efforts to conserve indigenous Gulf Coast marine life. Located in Lake Jackson, Texas near Dow’s Freeport plant, the Center includes educational programs and research capabilities designed to replenish dwindling fish populations and maintain the natural Gulf shore habitat. This $13 million facility resulted from a unique partnership between The Dow Chemical Company, Gulf Coast Conservation Association and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department with support of Sportfish Restoration Funds administered through the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service.


Project #: HAB-01-27
Company: The Pier Aquarium, Inc., St. Petersburg FL
Project Name: “Tampa Bay Walks The Talk”
Category: Youth/Education
Project Type: Habitat (also Nutrient Enrichment)
Average Rating: 18.926


"Tampa Bay Walks The Talk" is an interactive, reusable educational activity card that was developed by The Pier Aquarium, Inc. with funds from The Tampa Bay Estuary Program (TBEP).   The project set out to educate citizens about our local marine water bodies, our impact on them as coastal residents and visitors, and the importance for their conservation and protection.  The cards are used during educational programs at The Pier Aquarium's Education Station at Spa Beach.  They were conceptualized, designed and produced in 1999 and were implemented beginning in February 2000, continuing up to the present.    


Project #: PH-01-07
Company: Louisiana Office of Conservation
Project Name: Underwater Obstruction Removal Program
Category: Government
Project Type: Public Health and Habitat
Average Rating: 16.679


The Underwater Obstruction Removal Program is eliminating all obstructions along the Louisiana coastline thereby preventing injury to boaters, damage to boats and equipment, and promoting a better environment. The program was established because a concerned group of citizens believed that it was time to stop allowing obstructions in Louisiana's coastal waters to accumulate. It is administered by the Office of Conservation to ensure timely and economical performance. Thirteen survey projects and seven removal projects were completed from January 1998 to the present and have proven the value of the program to the environment and public.

Project #: NE-01-22
Company: Mississippi Soil & Conservation Commission, Jackson MS
Project Name: Animal Waste Irrigation Demonstration Project
Category: Government
Project Type: Nutrient Enrichment
Average Rating: 16.679

This project was designed to improve water quality, as well as reduce production costs, by providing equipment and assistance in pumping out animal waste lagoons and applying the waste as a fertilizer to a nearby cover crop.  The demonstration project began in June 1990 and ended in August 1993.  This project involved the joint efforts of the MDEQ (Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality), MSWCC (Mississippi Soil and Water Conservation Commission), local conservation districts and farmers.  The project initially took place in 4 counties in the Lower Pearl River Watershed.


Project #: PH/HAB-01-15
Company: Rivers, Lakes, Bays ‘N Bayous Trash Bash
Project Name: Trash Bash 2000
Category: Civic/Nonprofit Organization
Project Type: Public Health/Habitat
Average Rating: 15.000


            The Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission Clean Rivers Program formally established the River, Lakes, Bays ‘N Bayous Trash Bash in 1994 to address Galveston Bay water issues from a grassroots base.  Originally, Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC) provided regional coordination for the Trash Bash that established a solid “networking” foundation for sponsors and volunteers.  In 1996, Gulf Coast Waste Disposal Authority assumed the role of Regional Coordinator for the Trash Bash and continued what H-GAC started.  Since 1994, the annual River, lakes Bays ‘N Bayous Trash Bash has grown to become the largest prevention and cleanup effort in the state.  In 2000, educational displays and trash collection occurred simultaneously at 12 locations within the San Jacinto River watershed.  An estimated 5,100 volunteers collected over 170 tons of trash this year alone.

SECOND PLACE INDIVIDUAL                       

Project #: NS-01-06
Company: Marilyn Barrett-O’Leary
Project Name: Sea Grant’s Nonindigenius Species Outreach, Education, and Research Program for the Gulf of Mexico
Category: Individual
Project Type: Nonindigenous Species
Average Rating: 19.250

            Preventing and controlling invasion of the Gulf Region by zebra mussels and other nonindigenous species has been the goal of several related projects on which Marilyn worked between 1993 and 2000.  The goal, initially to inform target audiences about the potential for zebra mussel invasion, evolved into the larger goal of helping people understand that (1) invading plants and animals can disrupt peoples’ lives and environments, and (2) people can prevent and control these invasions by taking additional care in routine work and play.  The major audiences are involved in recreational boating, aquaculture, aquarium and water garden hobbies, inland and transoceanic navigation, and surface water using industries.


Project #: HAB-01-17
Company: Baldwin County Soil & Water Conservation District
Project Name: Weeks Bay Watershed Pollution Prevention Project
Category: Partnerships
Project Type: Habitat
Average Rating: 16.643

The Baldwin County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) was awarded $300,000 from the Gulf of Mexico Program in 1993 for the Weeks Bay Watershed Pollution Prevention Project. These monies were targeted to the education and implementation of innovative agricultural practices that reduced non-point source pollution in the watershed. Monies were also expended to improve water quality through the installation of Best Management Practices (BMPs). Examples of BMPs included purchase of a no-till grain drill that was in turn rented to producers interested in this new technology, purchase of two portable chemical mixing stations, restoration of a 17 acre wetland, and purchase of crushed limestone for application on environmentally damaging dirt roads. The Pollution Prevention Project offered an increase in cost-share percentage funding for installation of BMPs such as strip cropping, terraces, and erosion structures. Many partners were pulled into the project including the Weeks Bay Watershed Project, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Baldwin County Commission, and the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Posted: 12 July 2001

Gulf of Mexico Program Office
Mail Code: EPA/GMPO
Stennis Space Center, MS 39529-6000
FAX: 228-688-2709

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