Restoration Plan

The Trustee Council adopted a Restoration Plan for the civil settlement funds in 1994 after an extensive public process. More than 2,000 people participated in the meetings or sent in written comments.

At the January 19, 2021 Council meeting, the Trustee Council approved to shift the annual public meeting and funding process to five-year cycle. The five year cycle will maintain annual and final reporting for all projects, and also a biennial review of projects by entities including the Council’s staff, Science Panel and Public Advisory Committee. The Council also approved a limited extension of the oil spill area boundary eastward to incorporate the Copper River Delta and the Bering River, including its headwaters. Please see Resolutions 21-02 and 21-03 for details. The 1994 Restoration Plan will be edited accordingly and available on the website once it is finalized.

As part of the settlement agreement, $173.2 million went to reimburse the federal and state governments were reimbursed for costs incurred conducting spill response, damage assessment, and litigation. Another $39.9 million went to reimburse Exxon for cleanup work that took place after the civil settlement was reached.

The remaining funds were dedicated to implementation of the Restoration Plan, which consisted of four parts, described below.

Summaries of annual spending can be found at:

Research, Monitoring, & General Restoration:
Surveys and other monitoring of fish and wildlife in the spill region provide basic information to determine population trends, productivity, and health. Research increases our knowledge about the biological needs of individual species and how each contributes to the Gulf of Alaska ecosystem. Research also provides new information and better tools for effective management of fish and wildlife populations.

General Restoration includes projects to protect archaeological resources, improve subsistence resources, enhance salmon streams, reduce marine pollution, and restore damaged habitats.

Additional information on Research, Monitoring and Restoration can be found at: and

The Council's Annual Workplans can be found at:

Restoration Reserve:
This savings account was established in recognition that full recovery from the oil spill would not occur for decades. The investment fund supports long-term restoration activities after the final payment from Exxon was received.

Additional information on Research, Monitoring and Restoration can be found at: and

The Council's Annual Workplans can be found at:

Habitat Protection:
Protection of habitat helps prevent additional injury to species due to intrusive development or loss of habitat. The Trustee Council accomplishes this by providing funds to government agencies to acquire title or conservation easements on land important for its restoration value.

Information on the Council's Habitat program can be found at:

Public Information, Science Management & Administration:
This component of the budget includes management of the annual work plan and habitat programs, scientific oversight of research, monitoring and restoration projects, agency coordination, and overall administrative costs. It also includes the cost of public meetings, newsletters, and other means of disseminating information to the public such as this website.

The Council's Annual Workplans can be found at:

Information on the Council's Public Advisory Committee can be found at: