FEMA announced that federal emergency aid has been made available to the territory in U.S. Virgin Islands to supplement the territory’s response efforts to the emergency conditions resulting from a water shortage and health impact from unprecedented sargassum seagrass influx beginning on July 15, 2022, and continuing.
The President’s action authorizes FEMA to coordinate all disaster relief efforts which have the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by the emergency on the local population, and to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures. This is authorized under Title V of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act to save lives; to protect property, public health and safety; and to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe.
Specifically, FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize and provide, at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency. Emergency protective measures, including direct federal assistance under the Public Assistance program, will be provided for a period of 90 days for the island of St. Croix.
Patrick Cornbill has been named as the Federal Coordinating Officer for federal response operations in the affected area.