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NOAA accepts NERR nomination of Bay of Green Bay

You could soon have portions of a National Estuarine Research Reserve a short drive away after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration accepted the state’s nomination of the site.


Governor Tony Evers made the announcement on Thursday after nominating the Bay of Green Bay to be a part of the NERR system in 2022. The system consists of 30 sites nationwide designed to protect and study estuaries and their coastal wetlands. Spearheaded by UW-Green Bay since 2019, the Bay of Green Bay NERR would comprise several smaller sites, including one located near Sturgeon Bay.


“Conserving and protecting our natural resources and land continues to be a top priority for my administration, and I am thrilled to see this important effort to designate a site along the Bay of Green Bay as a new National Estuarine Research Reserve move forward,” said Governor Tony Evers.


There are still several steps before the Bay of Green Bay is officially designated as a NERR, potentially bringing a visitor center to Sturgeon Bay if the city beats out proposals from Green Bay and Marinette. Sturgeon Bay Mayor David Ward is excited to see what progresses from here, even if it takes a long time.


Designating an area as a NERR typically takes 4-6 years. NOAA and UW-Green Bay will host two public meetings on March 19th to solicit comments on significant issues related to developing a Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Bay of Green Bay NERR. A virtual session will occur at 10 a.m., while an in-person event will be held at 1:30 p.m.


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Cheryl Jome

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