but finally the RIGHT projects are going through.... we need more...
but at least now there is movement.
See recent article in New Orleans Times Picayune in full below
Coastal restoration projects move forward
Saturday, December 10, 2011 - Times Picayune
By Mark Schleifstein
Construction of a half-dozen major coastal restoration projects in Louisiana took a small step forward Friday with federal and state officials signing an agreement outlining how to design the projects. The agreement frees up the first $20 million appropriated by Congress this year to be spent on pre-construction engineering and design work.
Traditionally, such projects are financed by appropriations by Congress, which may be sparse during the next few years.
But some of the projects may get funded through fines or mitigation costs levied against BP and other companies found responsible under the federal Clean Water Act and the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
The state also hopes to use part of its share of future revenue from federal offshore oil and gas leases, similar revenue from in-state leases, and from past state budget surpluses to pay its share of construction costs.
“These projects will help to reduce the risk from storm surge of a hurricane by supporting the multiple lines of defense system,” said Col. Ed Fleming, commander of the Army Corps of Engineers’ New Orleans District office.
He was referring to a strategy underlying both the federal restoration plan and the state’s coastal restoration master plan that locates land-building projects in areas where they can help protect populated areas from storm surges.
“The LCA 6 projects utilize the three important coastal restoration methods: barrier island restoration, river diversions, and marsh creation and nourishment,” Fleming said.
The first projects will include:
- Amite River Diversion Canal Modification, which will improve the flow of water into the cypress swamp and wetlands to the west of Lake Maurepas in Livingston and Ascension parishes.
- Small Diversion at Convent/Blind River, where about 3,000 cubic feet per second of Mississippi River water will be pumped through a canal near Romeville into the cypress swamp and wetlands west of Lake Maurepas in Ascension and St. James parishes.
- Medium Diversion at White Ditch will allow up to 35,000 cubic feet per second of Mississippi River water and sediment to be diverted near Phoenix into wetlands on the east bank of Plaquemines Parish.
- Terrebonne Basin Barrier Shoreline Restoration will rebuild marshland, dunes and beaches on Raccoon, Whiskey, Trinity and Timbalier islands in Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes.
- Convey Atchafalaya River Water to Northern Terrebonne Marshes. This project combines two proposals — routing Atchafalaya water into the Bayou Chene/Gulf Intracoastal Waterway system and designing a gate structure in the Houma Navigation Channel to allow that water to pass into sensitive wetlands.