The Coastal America Partnership, which includes the Executive Office of the President, recognized the work of the Nisqually Estuary Restoration Team in an award ceremony on Saturday, December 10 at the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge.
The restoration team, which includes Thurston County as a member of the Nisqually River Council, was cited by Coastal America for planning, funding and implementing the restoration of over 900 acres of tidal habitat, "the largest ongoing estuary restoration project in the Pacific Northwest." Coastal America also praised the restoration team for reconnecting "hundreds of acres of estuary habitat with the tides of Puget Sound after an absence of more than a century."
"This recognition is huge," says Thurston County Commissioner Sandra Romero who accepted the award on behalf of the South Sound Deschutes Salmon Recovery Planning Group. "The award demonstrates that by working together big things can get accomplished. Many of the local watersheds directed funding to the Nisqually Wildlife Refuge project that would have gone to their individual projects."
Restoration team members include the Nisqually Indian Tribe, Ducks Unlimited, Joint Base Lewis McChord, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, and other state and local organizations. More details on the restoration project are available at nisquallyriver.org/