Diversions, Old Vegetation and New Vegetation

By Jenneke Visser, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, & Andy Nyman, Louisiana State University This is part five of the series “Building Land in Coastal Louisiana: Expert Recommendations for Operating a Successful Sediment Diversion that Balances Ecosystem and Community Needs.” See previous parts on the Sediment Diversion Operations Expert Working Group, Hydrodynamics of a sediment diversion, Geology of land building using sediment diversions, and Building land while balancing historic and cultural effects. In the last 50 years, coastal Louisiana has …

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Reconnecting the Delta: How Increased Mud Supply Can Improve Sediment Diversions

Jordan Davis, Mississippi River Delta Restoration Science Intern, Environmental Defense Fund Rising sea level and anthropogenic sediment loss is a combination affecting sustainability of deltaic ecosystems. Around the world, major deltas have been experiencing a 44% decline in sediment supply since the 1950s due to construction of dams and reservoirs, including the Mississippi River Delta. A recent journal article, published in Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, examined the role of fine-grained sediments in deltaic restoration. The authors found that the …

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Beyond the Basin: Reflections on my Upstream Upbringing

By Christina Rouse, Mississippi River Delta Restoration Projects Intern, Environmental Defense Fund Clang. A knot of rusted chains pulls shut the driveway gate, bringing it closed with a final smack against a worn fencepost. Just like that, my Sunday afternoon visit to our family farm in Clarksville, Missouri ends. After a quick trip home to Saint Louis, it’s time to catch a flight to Washington, D.C. for my internship. On top of a hill, our farmhouse is safe from flooding; …

The Geology of Land Building Using Mississippi River Sediment Diversions

08.03.2016 | By Dr. Alex Kolker, Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium and Tulane University

This is part three of the series “Building Land in Coastal Louisiana: Expert Recommendations for Operating a Successful Sediment Diversion that Balances Ecosystem and Community Needs.” View parts one and two. Successfully operating a sediment diversion in Louisiana requires that we understand how water and sediment naturally flow in places where the river enters the coast. The basic physical processes are relatively simple. When a sediment-rich river, like the Mississippi, enters an open bay, the flow spreads out and sediments …

Exploring the Hydrodynamics of a Sediment Diversion at Mid-Barataria

08.01.2016 | By Dr. J. Alex McCorquodale, Professor and FMI Endowed Chair, University of New Orleans

This is part two of the series “Building Land in Coastal Louisiana: Expert Recommendations for Operating a Successful Sediment Diversion that Balances Ecosystem and Community Needs.” See part one here. Historically, the Mississippi River has periodically overtopped its natural levee and flooded the adjacent wetlands with sediment-laden water. This natural process has been interrupted by the construction of flood control levees, and the available sediment has been reduced by the construction of upriver reservoirs. The proposed introduction of diversions from …

Recommendations for Operating a Sediment Diversion that Balances Ecosystem and Community Needs

07.27.2016 | Posted by Natalie Peyronnin, Director of Science Policy, Mississippi River Delta Restoration, Environmental Defense Fund

This is part one of the series “Building Land in Coastal Louisiana: Expert Recommendations for Operating a Successful Sediment Diversion that Balances Ecosystem and Community Needs.” This series will explore key recommendations for operating sediment diversions as outlined by the independent Sediment Diversion Operations Expert Working Group. The use of sediment diversions, a restoration tool that mimics the natural processes of the Mississippi River to build and sustain land, has been proposed for decades in coastal Louisiana. While we move …

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Restoration Solutions: Sediment Diversions

The State of Louisiana is advancing two sediment diversions south of New Orleans. These projects are on track to begin construction by 2020 using funding from the BP oil spill. Multiple projects working together are needed to build and sustain land, but sediment diversions are a crucial foundation needed to confront Louisiana's ongoing land loss crisis. Learn more about sediment diversions in the fact sheet below.    

Independent Scientists Release Recommendations for Building Land in Coastal Louisiana

Sediment Diversions Present Opportunity to Rebuild Louisiana’s Coast, Protect against Rising Seas FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Jacques Hebert, jhebert@audubon.org, 504-264-6849 (New Orleans – July 21, 2016) Today, the Sediment Diversion Operations Expert Working Group – a team of leading scientists and community experts with decades of experience working in coastal Louisiana – released key recommendations for operating Mississippi River sediment diversions to most effectively build and maintain land while considering the needs of communities, wildlife and fisheries. Sediment diversions are …

Audubon Perspectives: Witnessing Land-Building in Louisiana

07.14.2016 | By Harmony HamiltonAudubon Perspectives

Originally posted by Audubon Louisiana on July 11, 2016. See original post here. Greetings! My name is Harmony Hamilton; I am Audubon Louisiana’s inaugural Walker Communications Fellow. In this role, I will be working with Audubon Louisiana staff and supporters to capture the impact the National Audubon Society and its partners are having on birds and people across Louisiana’s coast. I recently had the opportunity to visit the Caernarvon Freshwater Diversion, just a few miles south of New Orleans, to …

LPBF Launches Hydrocoast Maps to Monitor Conditions in Barataria Basin

06.09.2016 | Posted by Theryn Henkel, Assistant Director of Coastal Sustainability Program, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation

Due to popular demand, the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation has created Hydrocoast Maps for Barataria Basin.  As it has done in neighboring Pontchartrain Basin, the maps for the Barataria Basin will monitor the salinity, freshwater input, weather and fisheries in order to gain a deeper understanding of estuarine dynamics, changes to the basin over time and to provide a baseline to monitor future changes as restoration projects are completed. Hydrocoast Maps provide a snapshot of the conditions of the estuary, …

Tracking Fish with Acoustic Telemetry—Implementation of an Exciting Technology in Lake Pontchartrain

05.31.2016 | Posted by Nic Dixon, Outreach Associate, National Audubon Society

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) and many other fisheries organizations and scientists worldwide have traditionally used fish tags to keep track of fish populations. You may have even applied these simple dart-tipped plastic tags to a fish yourself. Standard fish tagging efforts (in part) identify where the fish was originally captured, Point A, and then where the fish was recaptured, Point Z. But there is not a clear picture of where these fish were for points B, …

Louisiana Wetlands: Recognizing a National Treasure During American Wetlands Month

05.26.2016 | Posted by Richie Blink, Plaquemines Parish Community Outreach Coordinator, National Wildlife Federation

May is American Wetlands Month, and Louisiana's coastal wetlands are some of the most productive ecosystems in North America. Not only do they provide habitat for numerous fish, wildlife and birds, but they also help improve water quality, provide recreational opportunities and protection for people and infrastructure from damaging storm surges. Wildlife habitat and nurseries Wetlands serve as a nursery environment for juvenile fish. The countless ponds, bays and bayous found in the Mississippi River Delta provide essential habitat for …

Louisiana Legislature Passes Resolution Funding State’s 2016-2017 Coastal Activities

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Jacques Hebert, National Audubon Society, 504.264.6849, jhebert@audubon.org Elizabeth Van Cleve, Environmental Defense Fund, 202.553.2543, evancleve@edf.org Emily Guidry Schatzel, National Wildlife Federation, 225.253.9781, schatzele@nwf.org Jimmy Frederick, Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana, 225.317.2046, jimmy.frederick@crcl.org John Lopez, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, 504.421.7348, jlopez@saveourlake.org Louisiana Legislature Passes Resolution Funding State’s 2016-2017 Coastal Activities Resolution Directs Investment of $736 Million to Key Restoration and Protection Projects (Baton Rouge, LA– May 20, 2016) Yesterday, in a unanimous vote, the Louisiana Senate approved House …

Barrier Island Restoration: An Investment in Coastal LA’s Future and for Nesting Seabirds, Part 3

04.21.2016 | Posted by Erik Johnson, Director of Bird Conservation, National Audubon Society

Our partners at Audubon Louisiana published a series of blog posts that we are cross-posting here. View the original blog post here. As we mark the sixth anniversary of the BP oil spill this week – an event that significantly and negatively impacted Louisiana’s already disappearing barrier islands and the species that depend on them – we will examine the status of barrier island restoration. Over the coming days, we’ll publish a series of blog posts that detail what work has …

Rebuilding after the BP Oil Spill

04.20.2016 | Posted by Rebuilding after the BP Oil Spill

By our partner, National Wildlife Federation. View the original post here. Six years ago this week, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded, killing 11 men and spewing millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico for nearly three months. At the time, many representatives from the Restore the Mississippi River Delta Coalition were on the ground, cataloging the impacts to wildlife and the habitats of the Gulf of Mexico. Six years later, we are still hard at work. …

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