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The Corporation is organized and shall operate exclusively for charitable, scientific, and educational purposes to encourage and assist in achieving sound use, development, protection, control, sustainability and restoration of the resources of the Barataria-Terrebonne estuary by securing resources to advance the work of the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program (BTNEP).
BTNEP is one of 28 national estuary programs throughout the United States and its territories. We are the only National Estuary Program in Louisiana. In order to become a National Estuary, you must be nominated by the governor of your state, and provide clear evidence that your estuary is critically imperiled and nationally significant. In the early 90s, efforts began to develop the operating strategies for BTNEP. Hundreds of stakeholders spent thousands of hours over the course of five years identifying issues that face our ecology, economy, and culture, and developing a plan of action to address those issues. Participants were not limited to government officials or scientist, but rather included all the stakeholders of the estuary, from commercial fishermen to port executives, federal agencies to small local governments. The goal was to develop a holistic approach to preservation, protection, and restoration that was built out of consensus, and thus could be realistically implemented and benefit the people of the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary as a whole. Out of that five-year effort came the BTNEP Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP).