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National Estuary Program (NEP)

Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan for Coastal and Heartland National Estuary Partnership

The Coastal and Heartland National Estuary Partnership (CHNEP) (Formerly Charlotte Harbor) began when former Florida Governor Chiles submitted a nomination to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to designate the greater Charlotte Harbor estuarine system as an estuary of national significance. On July 6, 1995, seven nominations were accepted, including the CHNEP. Now, the CHNEP is one of 28 NEPs nation-wide; one of four in Florida (along with Tampa Bay, Sarasota Bay, and Indian River Lagoon).

This 20-year Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP) identifies the region's priority environmental issues and the actions needed to solve them. The 2013 update identifies research needed to address management questions, restoration activities, legislative changes, and public outreach needs. It expresses a vision, quantifiable objectives and priority actions with strategies. 

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