The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has awarded a multi-million dollar contract to Coastal Environment Group, Inc., of New York to clean up the debris, left by Superstorm Sandy.
The Service received nearly $65 million in federal
emergency funding for projects at national wildlife refuges and fish hatcheries
that were damaged during the 2012 super storm.
Refuge Manager Virginia Rettig said in a press release, “Forsythe refuge’s marshes buffered inland areas from the full brunt of Hurricane Sandy. Nature is our best defense against future storms, and we will clean and restore this vibrant and resilient stretch of coast to sustain wildlife and protect the people of New Jersey in the future.”
Coastal Environment Group, Inc., has responded to Hurricane Katrina and remediation at Superfund sites. This year they worked on a post-Sandy debris removal project at Fire Island, N.Y.
“Coastal is committed to providing jobs and supporting businesses in the local area,” Clint Whitton, the company’s project manager for the debris clean up, said in the release. “We are in the process of hiring local personnel to staff our work crews.”
The cleanup at Forsythe refuge will begin in Brick, Stafford and Eagleswood townships, where the bulk of the debris is located. The project will proceed through project zones in Ocean, Burlington and Atlantic counties, and is expected to be done by next spring.
The debris field on the
refuge includes large piles that contain roofs, docks, boats, household
chemicals and drums which may contain contaminants, among many other items.
Some debris will be removed using tracked vehicles to minimize damage to the marshes, and some will be removed by boats and specialized watercraft. Service biologists and independent project inspectors will be advising the company throughout the project.