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    The Living Shoreline at MCAS Cherry Point



    Courtesy Story

    Marine Corps Installations Command

    The U.S. Marine Corps, in partnership with the North Carolina Sentinel Landscape Committee, Pew Charitable Trusts, Duke University and other local agencies, will construct 2,100 linear feet of living shoreline along the coastline at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Cherry Point.

    In October 2020 the DoD’s Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration (REPI) Challenge awarded $1 million to fund the living shoreline project at MCAS Cherry Point. The REPI Challenge was created in response to natural disasters and serious weather that continually threaten military installations and negatively impact training and functionality, compromise troop and family safety and limit operational capabilities. The focus of the project is to strengthen the coastline in front of base housing to make it more resilient against severe weather and erosion and to protect the base from flooding, waves and storm surges. To do this, natural flora and fauna will be transplanted along the shoreline.

    The MCAS Cherry Point living shoreline is a protected coastline that consists of salt marshes and oyster reefs, which are essential to protecting local marine life and enabling sea grass to grow. Oysters promote the growth of sea grass, which enables the formation of reefs and marshes – all of which strengthen coastlines.

    “We’ve partnered with other organizations in the area that have done this before, so they’ve been a great help and they’ve helped us develop our plan and go through the process in the proper way,” said Jessica Guilianelli, Natural Resources Manager, MCAS Cherry Point. “It’s really been something that’s brought a lot of different organizations together.”

    In 2018, MCAS Cherry Point suffered extensive damage from Hurricane Florence and is still recovering. Excessive rainwater caused flooding and the runoff greatly impacted the rate of erosion along the coastline by base housing and along other parts of the Neuse River. In addition to the shoreline grant, the base received $8 million in emergency funding to repair facilities that were damaged during Hurricane Florence.

    “The updates are important as the base prepares to receive its first F-35s in the near future,” said Colonel Matthew Hakola. “The air station is preparing to accommodate those F-35 squadrons and their jets and will construct hangars to house them.”

    The restoration at MCAS Cherry Point links to a larger coastline project funded by Pew Charitable Trusts that will extend the living shoreline an additional 5,600 linear feet along the river - providing greater benefits to the ecosystem, installation and surrounding community. The project is expected to be completed by 2022.



    Date Taken: 04.30.2021
    Date Posted: 05.12.2021 09:54
    Story ID: 396194
    Location: NC, US

    Web Views: 154
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