Maryland and Virginia Awarded $17 Million to Protect Against Storms

States receive $17 million in grants to improve storm readiness after Superstorm Sandy

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    The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge in Md., which will benefit from grant funds. (Photo by Micah Walter/Getty Images)

    Maryland and Virginia have been awarded $17 million in grants for projects to protect communities against damage from future storms.

    The U.S. Department of the Interior's Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resilience Grant Program announced more than $100 million in grants to 11 states in the eastern U.S. on Monday.

    The largest grant for Md. was $3.5 million to create 25 acres of new salt marsh and increase salt marsh productivity at Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge and Fishing Bay Wildlife Management Area in Dorchester County.

    A $2.4 million grant will create, restore, and improve North Beach's shoreline in Calvert County.

    More than $10 million was also awarded to Virginia. The largest of the grants, for $4.6 million, was allotted for eight shoreline restoration projects and to develop a green infrastructure plan for the LaFayette River watershed, in Norfolk.

    Maryland and Virginia are providing matching funds for the projects.

    D.C. will also benefit from a $520,000 grant to be shared with the 11 other states, which will be used to improve storm-related data resources.