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GALVESTON, Texas -- Federal and state agencies have started looking at natural resource damage from a March oil spill in Galveston Bay to come up with a dollar estimate.

A U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist tells The Galveston County Daily News the assessment, which can take years, will include examination of wildlife in marshes and beaches and the impact on recreation. Part of the assessment is also to develop a plan to restore damaged areas, put the plan in place and get the party responsible for the damage to pay for it.

About 170,000 gallons of oil spilled into the bay March 22 and then into the Gulf of Mexico when a cargo ship collided with a barge attached to a tugboat.

The Coast Guard is still investigating the accident.

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Information from: The Galveston County Daily News, http://www.galvnews.com

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