Project SHARE (Salmon Habitat and River Enhancement) was one of two conservation organizations in Maine and 50 nationwide to receive Recovery Act funding for coastal habitat restoration projects via the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administrationâ€™s (NOAA) Restoration Center. This restoration project is the focus of an August 10 press event in Orono followed by a bus tour of sites in Washington Countyâ€™s Machias River watershed. As a result of this funding, SHARE is removing over 50 fish passage barriers and restoring coldwater habitat throughout the Machias River watershed, opening 66 miles of habitat for endangered Atlantic salmon and other species such as native Eastern brook trout.
â€śNOAAâ€™s decision to invest in this region shows there continued commitment to the resource,â€ť stated Steve Koenig, Executive Director of Project SHARE in 2009. â€śNot only will this money go towards conservation it will also create over 40 jobs as a result.â€ť As part of this project, SHARE has and continues to employ dozens of people (ranging from local high school interns and college students to local construction contractor crews and scientists) and is on track for project completion.
SHARE, a grassroots non-profit 501(c) 3 organization, was formed in 1994 by landowners, fisheries agencies and other stakeholders concerned about the status of Maineâ€™s wild anadromous Atlantic salmon and seeking a proactive way to restore their habitat in the Downeast coastal region. â€śThis organization is the best example of cooperation and collaboration you will find â€“ it is this focus that allows this effort to be such a successâ€ť said Patrick Keliher, Chairman of Project SHARE and Director of Sea Run Fisheries for the Maine Department of Marine Resources.
SHARE attributes its on-the-ground restoration capacity to continued landowner support and cooperation; member commitments of staff, technical assistance, funds and expertise; engaged regulators; an environment of mutual respect, cooperation and commitment among its members; and a cadre of student and professional volunteers. The resultant restoration program is considered a model for cooperative conservation by landowners and agencies alike and has been recognized with several awards including the 2010 â€ś10 Waters to Watchâ€ť and 2009 National Fish Habitat Extraordinary Action Award for demonstrating an extraordinary commitment to fish habitat conservation, science and education and leading by example to help resolve the nationâ€™s most significant fisheries problems.
Contact Name: Katrina Mueller
Telephone Number: (517)256-0914