CELCP | About CELCP
The Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program (CELCP) was established in 2002 as a companion to the Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA). Congress recognized a need for more tools to help states manage the growing pressures on the nation’s coasts, already the most densely populated areas in the country. Congress also recognized that there was no Federal program explicitly focused on conservation of coastal lands, where the needs are greatest, and the pressure to develop remaining pristine areas is increasing. (Congressional Record, June 2002)
NOAA published CELCP final guidelines for the program in the Federal Register in 2003 after seeking public comment.
The Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 made CELCP a part of the CZMA and authorizes Congress to appropriate up to $60 million for the program annually.
CELCP helps advance the national goals and priorities of the CZMA, including
- Protection of coastal ecosystems, including wetlands, corals, and natural shorelines
- Preservation of natural features that provide storm protection such as dunes and barrier islands
- Minimizing loss of life and property by directing development out of high risk areas
- Safeguarding coastal water quality
- Preservation of historic, cultural, and archeological features
- Protection of aesthetic coastal features such as scenic vistas
- Providing opportunities for public access to the coast
Many CELCP projects also support NOAA’s mission to protect critical habitat for threatened and endangered species under the Endangered Species Act and essential fish habitat for species managed under the Magnuson-Stevens Fisheries Conservation Act.
CELCP is a voluntary partnership between NOAA and coastal states and territories.
Coastal states and territories first develop CELCP plans which identify their conservation priorities for the program. They then use their CELCP plans to select projects for the national competition.
On an annual basis:
- NOAA may issue a request for proposals by publishing a Federal Funding Opportunity Notice in Grants.gov.
- Participating coastal states conduct a selection process to nominate projects within the state to the national funding competition (typically up to three projects each). State agencies and local governments, as defined in the CELCP guidelines are eligible to receive CELCP funds and hold title to land under CELCP.
- NOAA conducts a competitive merit review of the projects submitted to the national competition and develops a ranked list to guide selection of projects for funding.
- Successful applicants submit any additional information needed for a final grant application to NOAA, and once approved, receive funding to complete their land acquisition projects.
- In Your State to view contact information for state CELCP leads and state CELCP plans for participating coastal states
- Applying for a CELCP Grant to learn more about applicant and project eligibility requirements and the selection process
- Managing a Grant for more information on managing a CELCP grant
For more information, contact Elaine Vaudreuil at (301) 713-3155 ext. 103.