Gulf Restoration
Conserving the Nature of America

Resources for More Information


Below we have compiled additional information and links to third-party resources to help bring additonal clarity to the Gulf restoration process.



The RESTORE Act dedicates 80 percent of all administrative and civil penalties related to the Deepwater Horizon spill to a Gulf Coast Restoration Trust Fund and outlines a structure by which the funds can be utilized to restore and protect the natural resources, ecosystems, fisheries, marine and wildlife habitats, beaches, coastal wetlands, and economy of the Gulf Coast region. The RESTORE Act sets forth the following framework for allocation of the Trust Fund:

  • 35 percent equally divided among the five States for ecological restoration, economic development, and tourism promotion;
  • 30 percent plus interest managed by the Council for ecosystem restoration under the Comprehensive Plan;
  • 30 percent divided among the States according to a formula to implement State expenditure plans, which require approval of the Council;
  • 2.5 percent plus interest for the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Science, Observation, Monitoring and Technology Program within the Department of Commerce‚Äôs National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA); and
  • 2.5 percent plus interest allocated to the States for Centers of Excellence Research grants, which will each focus on science, technology, and monitoring related to Gulf restoration.

For more information on the RESTORE Act funding mechanisms, we recommend "The RESTORE Act: Comparing the Funding Mechanisms" fact sheet by the Environmental Law Institute.

RestoreTheGulf is the homepage of the Gulf Coast Restoration Council and hosts information on the latest developments within federal agencies on Gulf Restoration.




On February 17, 2012, and prior to passage of the RESTORE Act, the Department of Justice and MOEX Offshore 2007 LLC (a Deepwater Horizon oil spill responsible party) settled for $90 million ($70M civil; $20M criminal). $45 million was directed to the Gulf in the form of penalties or expedited environmental projects; $20 million (criminal penalties) of which was specifically dedicated for land acquisition in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Florida (Alabama was not part of the settlement agreement). The other $45 million (civil penalties) was directed to the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund.


BP Criminal Plea Agreement

For more on how the funds from the BP criminal agreement will be allocated, we recommend this "Criminal Plea Agreement Fact Sheet" by the Environmental Law Institute.


Transocean Criminal and Civil Settlements

For more on how funds from the Transocean criminal and civil settlements will be allocated, we recommend this "Transocean Settlement Fact Sheet" by the Environmental Law Institute.



Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Task Force

The Task Force was formed to build on the ongoing spill response and natural resource damage assessment effort, as well as achieve overall recovery for the gulf, and is comprised of federal and state leaders and informed by stakeholders in the region. President Obama appointed EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson, a New Orleans native, as Chair. The Task Force completed their work in December 2011.

The Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Task Force released its final strategy (PDF) for long term ecosystem restoration for the Gulf Coast, following extensive feedback from citizens throughout the region.

Among the key priorities of the strategy are:

  • Stopping the loss of critical wetlands, sand barriers and beaches
  • Reducing the flow of excess nutrients into the Gulf
  • Enhancing resiliency among coastal communities


National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: Gulf Spill Restoration

As a member of the Deepwater Horizon NRDA Trustee Council, NOAA is focusing on short-term and long-term restoration projects that will restore the Gulf Coast from the spill. The restoration planning process involves many steps and includes input from scientists, experts, and the public.

For a map of restoration projects managed by the NRDA trustees, including the Alabama Dune Restoration Cooperative Project at Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge, visit




A pathway through a maritime forest habitat

A maritime forest habitat on Sand Bayou Unit at Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. Photo: Jereme Phillips, USFWS

Sandhill cranes flying at sunset

Sanhill cranes in flight at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge. Photo: Marvin de Jong, USFWS

A Kemps ridley sea turtle lies on the beach

A Kemp's ridley sea turtle at Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. Photo: Jereme Phillips, USFWS

Last updated: September 23, 2013