04/17 - Coastal Restoration: The Next Wave
What new funding resources are available to the state?
Louisiana is in a battle against devastating land loss. The state’s 2017 updated coastal restoration Master Plan will be presented to the Legislature during the regular session that begins this month. For the first time in its history, Louisiana will have significant funding to begin implementing coastal projects, as the first of the state's long awaited oil and gas revenues kick in this year.
Critics of large river diversion projects fear fresh water will devastate salt water species and marsh grasses and take too long to have a measurable impact. Critics of dredging argue it is costly, only builds small areas, and may not be the best use of limited resources. But is it an either-or question? What new funding resources are available to the state?
Wednesday, April 26 at 7PM
Our panelists are
• Bren Haase; Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority
• Denise Reed, Ph.D.; The Water Institute of the Gulf
• Captain George Ricks; The Save Louisiana Coalition
• Mark Schleifstein; journalist, The Times Picayune
LPB CEO, Beth Courtney, and television news anchor, Andre’ Moreau, host the program.
Louisiana Public Square can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Alexandria; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check their station websites for schedule.
From the opening introduction of the plan:
“The major causes of this land loss include the effects of climate change, sea level rise, subsidence, hurricanes, storm surges, disconnection of the Mississippi River from coastal marshes, and human impacts.”
All of these “major causes” are the result of human impact.
There is little in the proposal that addresses behavior modification through enlightened self interest to the point of letting the coast return to its natural state by we people leaving and moving to sustainably planned communities that will look nothing like Baton Rouge, Jefferson Parish and St. Tammany.
Cultures around the world are tearing down their dams. The lead paragraph of the plan should stress abondoning fossil fuel dependency for alternative energy.
The panelists with thirty years experience in water and coastal reclamation should be politely asked to go to the back of the room. Louisiana is not leading. It is decades late and thinks a project will save us from ourselves.
Posted by Leonard Joseph on 04/27 at 07:29 AM
I live in Ascension Parish and just the other day they had a news story on the depths of the water on rivers. I would suggest that at the mouth of all our lakes there is major problems with silt build up . To me it would make great since to dredge the mouths of these rivers and create small islands so that boaters could use this land it would be Restoration ,Recreation and Relief of flood waters . I have talked with leaders about this and they all say funding is the problem. You have the Diversion canal and it goes from 30 Ft depth to 4 Ft that is a dam now that restrictes water flow . I bet even if they had the funding the corps and other agencies like DNR would have a problem with building such islands because of the red tape that government has created to improve drainage. To me it’s very sad that all the flood victims had to suffer due to lack of drainage . I have always said it seems to me that we could put pumps in the Bonne Carre spillway to pump water from the lake t!
o the river where it belongs I have been told it has to do with elevation but if it’s possible to flow when the rivers high it can be dug to make it flow the opposite way also . There would be no wetland impact and it would put the flood water where it belongs in the Miss River I work on the river and every hurricane season the river is very low . I feel you have to many diff government agencies going opposite directions instead of putting there heads together with a common goal Billions is being spent on the 2016 flood all while the Miss River was low needing water that is a projects I would like to see funding go toward just my thoughts .
Posted by Jared Mabile on 04/27 at 09:35 AM
The master planning for the coast is better than ever before and needs to be implemented holistically in full as soon as possible before it increases in its billion dollar a year price tag. I wonder how federal politicians can say there’s not enough money for restoration when they approve 85 billion a year to maintain obsolete Cold War era military bases around the world (couldn’t they just slide a billion of that defense money into the Army Corps budget?) or think they can suddenly propose 20 billion dollars to build a wall along the southern states? I’m sure there are other line items to be saved as well. Maybe the panel knows some of them.
Is there a serious discussion among the Louisiana delegation to fund the plan beyond BP infusions, to convince the Congress to invest in our delta/estuary as a vital and strategic piece of infrastructure for energy and food security, and provide leverage on the investment already made to provide the next generation’s future?
Posted by Kevin McCaffrey on 04/27 at 09:39 AM
Congratulations! The Coastal Restoration discussion was hugely important and so well done. Your panel of experts, all with related but diverse ideas, were impressive. Thank you.
Posted by Betty Gaiennie on 04/27 at 09:42 AM
Reclaim “Louisiana’s” percentage from our natural resources so that we receive the same percentage as all the other states! Why does Louisiana receive 1/2 the percentage of other states for our natural resources? Are we(Louisiana) so “wealthy” that we do not “feel” or “notice” this LOSS OF FUNDING or “THEFT”!!! Why is Louisiana’s coastal “Water” territory 1/2 that of the other coastal states? With our natural gas and oil reserves, if we(Louisiana) were being treated FAIRLY(like “ALL” other states), our INCOME WOULD “DOUBLE”! We could use this money to fund several dredging barges to run back and forth along our coastline and pump the sand from the Gulf of Mexico onto the Louisiana coastline… either for reclaiming that territory or at the very least MAINTAINING OUR LOUISIANA COASTLINE.
Posted by Ronnie Cutrer on 05/01 at 04:23 PM
Hi, Thanks for such a informative blog.
Posted by Mehwish Faraz on 05/26 at 05:55 AM