Southold Cedar Beach Creek Habitat Earns Federal Funding

U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin
U.S. Congressman Lee Zeldin.

The Cedar Beach Creek Habitat Restoration Demonstration Project will receive almost half a million in federal grant funding, Congressman Lee Zeldin announced this week.

The Cedar Beach Creek Habitat Restoration Demonstration Project, working with the Army Corps of Engineers, will restore local ecosystem functions in the degraded marsh system. According to a press release issued by Mr. Zeldin’s office, since 1930, the area has experienced significant marsh loss and degradation from erosion and past filling activities. This project will restore and create 19.5 acres of salt marsh and marsh islands through the beneficial use of clean dredged material, create new oyster reefs, create 1.7 acres of new seagrass meadow and improve 3 acres of new open water habitat through increased/improved flushing.

The Project grantee, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County, will implement this project with New York District of the Army Corps, in coordination with Suffolk County Parks and the Peconic Estuary Program to improve this 65 acre marsh, beach, and open water mosaic. This project will establish and enhance three critical marine habitats in the Peconic Estuary which is an EPA designated Estuary of National Significance.

“In a district nearly completely surrounded by water, we have a unique responsibility to safeguard our local environment,” said Mr.  Zeldin. “An important component of our community’s ecosystem is our area’s wetlands and salt marshes which protect our shores from erosion, reduce the impact of flooding, absorb pollutants and protect water quality. The diverse wildlife and vegetation is a critical part of Long Island’s ecological health.”

In July of this year, Congressman Zeldin secured $27 million in funding for the National Estuary Program, which funds this Federal Estuary Restoration Program.