During the Spring of 2021, the Conservation Corps North Carolina (CCNC) will work alongside the North Carolina Coastal Federation to complete several environmental restoration projects.
The partnership will involve six CCNC members between the ages of 18 and 27 traveling to parts of the central and southeast North Carolina coast to work with the Federation to remove marine debris, restore shorelines and valuable habitat and assist with stormwater and trail projects.
The members will camp for ten days at a time while working on the projects. The project work will begin the end of March and continue through mid-May.
The crew will partner with the federation and Cape Lookout National Seashore to remove large-scale marine debris at Core Banks.
They will also build and plant living shorelines at a variety of sites including Carolina Beach State Park, Morris Landing in Onslow County, and at several properties in Carteret County.
“We’re pleased to support projects like this that protect and expand access to North Carolina’s natural treasures, especially as more people are engaged in outdoor activities,” said Stephen De May, Duke Energy’s North Carolina president. “We are grateful for the important work CCNC is doing to protect the environment of our great state.”
CCNC is a program of Conservation Legacy, a national organization dedicated to supporting locally-based conservation service programs. Their mission is to engage youth and young adults in meaningful conservation service work that benefits North Carolina communities, and connects them to nature and the outdoors.
By working on projects that preserve, restore, and improve public lands and trails across the state, the program helps cultivate a new generation of natural resource restoration leaders, similar to the goal of the Global Regeneration Team.
While in the field young people learn sustainable and innovative coastal management techniques, earn valuable certifications and job skills, and understand the need for more sustainable management techniques to meet the challenges of North Carolina’s rapidly changing coastline.
“We are thrilled CCNC can partner with the federation on a living shorelines project,” said CCNC Program Director Michael Meredith.
“To our knowledge, this is the first time a Conservation Corps program has worked on a living shorelines project. This will be an increasingly important way for our young people to serve North Carolina communities and protect its most valuable habitats,” he added.
Other projects include trail blazing at the federation’s future headquarters office in Ocean, and rain garden maintenance.
“We are excited about this opportunity to clean up and restore the coast with CCNC and teach them about important coastal habitats and strategies for protecting them along the way,” said Sarah Bodin, coastal specialist for the federation.
This partnership is made possible by a grant from Duke Energy Foundation.
Featured photo courtesy of Conservation Corps North Carolina.