Concept

National Estuary Program

Summary
In the United States, the National Estuary Program (NEP) provides grants to states where governors have identified nationally significant estuaries that are threatened by pollution, land development, or overuse. Governors have identified a total of 28 estuaries, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awards grants to these states to develop comprehensive management plans to restore and protect the estuaries. Congress created the NEP in the 1987 amendments to the Clean Water Act. Program organization The National Estuary Program is made up of 28 smaller organizations set up regionally by estuary. Each of the estuary organizations is managed by local community leaders and staff. Participating organizations may include universities, local non-profit organizations, and state and local government agencies. It is the job of the NEP to help communities better protect, restore and maintain their estuaries. Unlike traditional environmental governance approaches, the NEP tar
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