In 2010, Shell Oil Company announced that it would provide $1.5 million in funding over three years to the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) habitat program and paved the way for a series of large-scale, angler-driven marine habitat projects in areas that were impacted by the Macondo accident.
In December of 2010, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal announced the first habitat project funded by the Shell/CCA partnership – the restoration of Independence Island in Barataria Bay – at a press conference in Baton Rouge.
In the two full years after that, almost $2.7 million was applied to marine habitat projects through the CCA habitat program, with $1 million in CCA funding matched by more than $1.6 million from various partners in both the private and public sectors. Additionally, BCT has benefited from partnerships with Costa Sunglasses, Shimano and Academy Sports + Outdoors. All habitat projects were initiated or vetted by CCA volunteers in those states and resulted in thousands of tons of materials being deposited or planted to complete 14 projects in the first two years of the partnership.
In July 2013, Shell earned the 2013 Gulf Guardian Award for its support of the “Floating Islands” marsh restoration project in Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana. The award is bestowed by the Gulf of Mexico Program, an initiative of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to facilitate collaborative actions to protect, maintain, and restore the health and productivity of the Gulf of Mexico.
In 2013, the Building Conservation Trust (BCT) was officially created as a supporting organization of CCA dedicated exclusively to the business of funding marine habitat creation and restoration in areas that can be accessed and enjoyed by recreational anglers.
Letter from the Executive Director
I am truly honored to be joining such a remarkable group of conservation professionals, philanthropists and volunteers as Executive Director for Coastal Conservation’s habitat program, the Building Conservation Trust (BCT). These are exciting times for me, both professionally and personally. I come to BCT after a successful career with Ducks Unlimited that spanned more than a decade, proudly raising development funds to conserve, restore and protect wetlands and waterfowl habitat across North America. Now, I’m ready to focus on marine habitat creation and conservation, ensuring our marine ecosystem is able to foster and sustain abundant animal life to be enjoyed by our generation and future generations.
I have been a member of CCA for years now and I am excited to bring my industry knowledge and expertise to raising funds to ensure the five key objectives of BCT on the previous page are met in perpetuity. One of the most satisfying returns from the creation of the Building Conservation Trust has been the excitement generated not only in the recreational angling community but also in the general public for this type of sustained effort to improve our marine ecosystems. While it was expected that there would be no shortage of ideas for habitat enhancement, the enthusiasm for BCT that has grown since it was founded in 2010 has been equally inexhaustible, and we look forward to continuing the high level of interest, focus and passion for years to come.
BCT projects have made a positive impact on marine habitat creation and restoration, from coast to coast to coast. I encourage you to read more about these initiatives on our website, www.buildingconservation.org to understand the magnitude of what we have been able to accomplish so far. And we are very excited and optimistic to have several more initiatives realized in 2017.
With the continued support of CCA members, the support of the various state agencies, our corporate partners and others, we will continue to achieve the objectives we set when we first discussed the need for a sustainable marine habitat program with Shell Oil Company. I look forward to growing this amazing program to enhance the incredible resources that have drawn all of us to the oceans.
– Sean Stone
Executive Director, Building Conservation Trust
Director of Communications & Media
GREG STUNZ, PH.D.