Delta Dispatches: Mapping Louisiana

Welcome to Delta Dispatches with hosts Simone Maloz & Jacques Hebert. On today’s show Brady Couvillion, Geographer with the Coastal Restoration Assessment Branch of the USGS Wetland and Aquatic Research Center, joins the program to talk with Simone about mapping Louisiana’s coast. He's followed by Dr. Scott Hemmerling, the Director of Human Dimension for The Water Institute of the Gulf, who stops by to talk with Simone about the human dimension of the loss of Louisiana’s wetlands and the atlas of Louisiana’s coast.

Below is a transcript of this week's Delta Dispatches Podcast. Listen to the full recording here or subscribe to our feed in iTunes and Google Play.

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Show Transcript

Simone: Hello, everybody. Welcome to Delta Dispatches where we're discussing Louisiana's coast, its people, wildlife and jobs and why restoring it matters. This is Simone Maloz with Restore or Retreat. I'm without Jacques again today. We'll see if we can make this work. Just a reminder. If you like to hear us together, you can catch the podcast on mississippiriverdelta.org/deltadispatches. You can listen to past episodes and you can also subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes and Google Play. We have been talking about GOMESA a lot.

We had an action alert that we talked about on several shows to say why we think that GOMESA needs to be included in the president's budget. There was a hearing on Wednesday on capitol here to talk about opportunities for GOMESA and how that can help Louisiana's coast. You can add your voice to that cause here.

Also, a reminder that there are some scoping meetings coming up for the Mid-Barataria sediment diversion, something else that we talk a lot about on this show. The meetings are scheduled to take place from 5 to 8. There's an open house and then there's a presentation and then there's a public comment period, and those meetings are July 20th in Lafitte at the multipurpose complex, July 25th in Belle Chasse at the auditorium there and July 27th at the Port Sulfur community center. There are some Facebook event pages. You can RSVP on Facebook and then you can also read more about the scoping meetings and the EIS process on the Mississippi River Delta blog called Your Voice Is Needed For Our Coast, attend upcoming mid-Barataria scoping meetings and again, that's at mississippiriverdelta.org.

So we have a great show lined up today. We want to talk about mapping Louisiana's coast and we're actually going to talk about two different kinds of mapping. So we're very, very pleased to have our first guest who's making the headlines this week. We want to welcome Brady to the show. Brady, hello. How are you?

Brady: I'm doing well. How are you?

Simone: Good, good. We just said that you're making the headlines this week, right?

Brady: Yeah, we have a new report on coastal wetland change out today and have some interesting findings.

Simone: Great, great. We're going to talk about that in just a little bit, but Brady, I’m a Theriot, right? So you got a nice Cajun name. Is it Couvillion?

Brady: Couvillion.

Simone: Couvillion. Like it. I like it. So, Brady's actually a geographer with the coastal restoration assessment branch of USGS Wetland and Aquatic Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Some of his research topics commonly include wetland morphology, vegetation monitoring, applications of remote sensing to natural resource assessments and landscape modeling and forecasting. That sounds like a lot, Brady. When you were a little Brady, did you ever dream that you would do this when you grew up?

Brady: I didn't. Really, when I was growing up I wanted to go into a career I wouldn't be behind a desk all day and now where am I? I'm behind a desk most days.

Simone: That's funny.

Brady: But we do get the occasional opportunity to go out in the field and those days are really enjoyable.

Simone: Yeah, but you get to look at maps a lot. You could tele-transport yourself there right, Brady?

Brady: I do. I do. I spend a lot of my time looking at satellite images of the coast and how it's changing and it's very enjoyable to constantly be studying this very dynamic environment.

Simone: We do like to talk about kind of different jobs that you can have in coastal Louisiana so really, how did you get to be interested in being a geographer? You went to LSU, I think, right?

Brady: I did. I went to LSU for both my undergraduate and graduate studies. When I was in undergraduate courses I was more so looking at going into various fields of environmental studies including forestry and when I got into that, I sort of, we spent some time in the field and I kind of noted that a crew of researchers in the field could maybe study an acre, maybe ten acres, at most a hundred acres in a day if you had a particularly well-designed sampling scheme and I saw the application of remote sensing to be able to sort of scale up and that one person could study thousands or tens of thousands of acres in a day and so that really appealed to me to be able to look at things from a much broader scale.

Simone: Very, very interesting. So, it's safe to say, Brady, you know every square inch or at least every square mile of Louisiana. You have a ton of publications but one of the most notable that people probably might recognize is your land area change map. The first map from 1932 to 2010. That is grounded in so much of what we do and so much in the education of how we talk to the people in Louisiana who know that we've been losing land but that puts some numbers to it, so let's talk about you've done this and I think you did that, that might have been 2005, Brady, is that right? Or around … ?

Brady: Our latest report was from 2011 but what's important here is there have been several researchers researching this topic throughout the years. I think, Gagliano was one of the first …

Simone: Yeah, sure. We know Woody.

Brady: … to recognize this problem and actually start to put some numbers to it back in the early 70s and since that time there have been several amazing scientists studying this problem. What we did with the 1932 through 2010 study was we tried to provide increased temporal resolution and so we studied a lot more dates. So, rather than just looking at a pre-date and a post-date and drawing some conclusions, we looked at in that particular study I believe 17 dates through time and so we were able to give information of not only how much we have lost in terms of wetland area but when that wetland loss occurred and that really helps to understand what the causal mechanisms of that loss may be.

Simone: Yeah, it's so neat to see and we've seen it in the Master Plans, right? That science has changed and so science has grown and advanced and so you're able to apply that in all kind of different ways to help us to better understand the issues, but just on a really high level, Brady, I mean, you've studied this for a while now. How have you seen Louisiana's coast change during all your years of study?

Brady: Well, I think the word that comes to mind is drastically. I mean, we're talking about 2,000 square miles of loss here over the past 84 years. We're talking about more coastal wetland loss than all other states in the United States combined. We're talking about a land area approximately equivalent to the entire state of Delaware, so this is a massive, massive issue and you never look at the coast on one day and look at it the next day and see the same coast.

Simone: Yeah, it's so, I love to hear you say things like that about a land area the size of Delaware. I mean, that's what really people understand and they can really think about that in terms of what's accessible to them and I know recently you got asked the question about a football field of land per hour and your new study does change some of that but that, putting it in terminology and things like that is very easy for people to understand what they've already seen but it puts it in a way that they can explain it to other people about the loss. So, I did see that you also, you did a lot of work after Katrina in some of the storms, right, to study some of the land loss after those storms, but one of the things I saw that you did some interesting work regarding people and raw 911 call data, so if you're willing, talk about that a little bit. That seems really fascinating.

Brady: Yeah. Well, Katrina was a terrible storm which impacted our coastal wetlands but more importantly it had devastating impacts on the people of the gulf coast and while normally we research coastal wetlands and initially following hurricane Katrina we were gearing up to go out into the wetlands and study the impacts of the storm on the wetlands, we started to hear the reports of the flooding in New Orleans and shortly thereafter we got a call from the Office of Emergency Preparedness asking if we had the ability to translate addresses into latitude and longitude coordinates. We said "Yes, we do." That's a GIS function. It's called geocoding. It's not what we normally do but yes, we have that ability and they said "Okay. We're going to send you a database with a couple of thousand in a couple of hours we'll have a few more thousand addresses and we need you to turn those around and give us latitude and longitude coordinates so that the helicopter pilots and the rescuers in boats can actually have something they can plug into their GPS and find these homes," because what you have to understand is the 911 system was largely reliant upon street signs and house numbers on houses in order to find the locations of people requesting help.

Well, Hurricane Katrina presented this unfortunate situation where most of those street signs and house numbers were under water and so it wasn't something that had really crossed a lot of people's minds, what if all the street signs are flooded?

Simone: Right. Right.

Brady: But we were able to sort of take a function which exists in GIS, make a few changes and start turning those addresses into latitude and longitude coordinates so that rescuers could find those people.

Simone: That is so, so neat. Brady, if you'll hold on just for a little bit. We're going to take a break right now. We want to talk about some big lessons that you've learned from your past work really quickly, but we want to talk about your new report. It's really, really fascinating, so hold on. We're on Delta Dispatches right now and we're going to be back with Brady Couvillion from USGS.


Simone: Welcome back to Delta Dispatches. I'm Simone Maloz of Restore or Retreat without my partner in crime, Jacques Hebert of Audubon Louisiana but we do have on Brady Couvillion of USGS. Brady's a geographer and is talking about some of his latest report that's out. So, Brady, let's just jump into the new report. Let's talk about it a little bit. It was time for a revision?

Brady: Yeah. Our last update of this report went through 2010 and there's definitely a lot of interest. People want to know what's happening, how are things changing and so it was time for an update of this report. This latest report goes through 2016.

Simone: So just tell us very quickly, we're going to hit the headline, right, and then I really want to get into the details of it, so if you had to caption a headline for your report, what would it be?

Brady: I would say, the real story here is that the rate of net wetland loss is decreasing.

Simone: Decreasing?

Brady: Decreasing, yeah, and so a measured source of positive news and we want to emphasize that things could change and wetland change is a constantly changing process and so if we experience a hurricane this year or we're definitely projected to see increase rates of sea level rise that rate could increase again, but actually since about the late 1970s we've been seeing a decrease in the rate of net wetland loss. We're still losing wetlands, but the rate at which we're experiencing that wetland loss is decreasing.

Simone: So, Brady, storms are certainly one of the reasons why that that attributes to land loss, right? So, let's talk about that a little bit.

Brady: Yeah, after the storms of 2005 and 2008 which includes hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Gustav and Ike, we were definitely showing some very, very low estimates of land area as a result of those storms. When you look at what has happened since those storms, since 2008 with the exception of hurricane Isaac in 2012, it's been a relatively calm period in terms of tropical activity, in terms of impacts to Louisiana's coastal wetlands. That period of relative calm in terms of tropical activity is likely contributing to this decrease in wetland loss rate.

Simone: So are there other factors, Brady?

Brady: Yeah, there are several possible factors. This study did not specifically assign causes to the change rates, but some of the theories are the relatively calm period in terms of tropical activity over the past eight years. One of the factor contributing to this decrease in net wetland loss rate are some successes in coastal restoration and protection activities. We're starting to see some of the effects of some of the coastal restoration projects that are being put on the ground by state and federal agencies and their influence is starting to show up in the coast wide net land area numbers. They're usually smaller projects and they have a small effect in terms of the coastal net land area numbers but in specific areas they can have a tremendous impact.

Simone: Yeah. And I do just want to go back to something that you said a little bit earlier. Brendan Hoss had a great way to say this. It's encouraging that the rates are slowing down, that's what you said, right, but it's still happening and Brendan's line, Brendan, who's been a past guest here on Delta Dispatches, said that past performance is no indication of future gains, right? We're still looking at subsidence, sea level rise, and those impacts of hurricanes.

Brady: Right. And so just because rates have decreased in the past, doesn't mean that they're going to continue to decrease in the future and they could actually increase in the future and actually all models indicate that they will increase in the future. So this is a study of history, what has happened. This is not a projection of what may happen in the future, but all of these studies which have looked at what may happen in the future suggests that, indicate that wetland loss may again increase.

Simone: So, Brady, I just brought up the Master Plan a little bit, does some of your work help inform the Master Plan?

Brady: Absolutely. Some of the rates that we calculate from historical change are used to inform the models which project possible wetland change in the future.

Simone: Okay, so Brady. What is your, are we talking a football field every hour, right? I love that they've asked you to break down that so many times about what that really means, but why don't you tell us what this new report, if you had to compare it to the football field, what is that number and then also talk about how you get there, right? It doesn't mean that literally every hour or however many minutes we're losing a football field, right? So, let's talk about what maybe the new number is and then let's break it down how we use that catchphrase.

Brady: Right. That analogy is one that is often misquoted.

Simone: An educational tool.

Brady: Right, and we have sort of a love/hate relationship with that statement. We absolutely love the public awareness that the analogy has provided, like you mentioned, it's an incredibly valuable educational tool. Scientists, we get wrapped up in numbers like square kilometers and if I say long term average wetland loss rate of 42.9 square kilometers per year. That's hard to visualize. It's hard to visualize for anybody, even, it's hard for me to visualize and I'm a geographer. So, putting it terms of something that everyone can recognize has a tremendous value. Unfortunately it's often misquoted and misunderstood and it comes across that every, unfortunately people sometimes misunderstand it to mean every single hour that passed during that time period one football field was lost.

Simone: Right. In a literal sense.

Brady: Right, in the literal sense. It's a long term average and coastal wetland loss is a dynamic process. There are some hours which go by where no coastal wetlands are lost. You might even gain coastal wetlands and then there are other hours which pass where you might lose thousands in an hour during disturbance event for example. So that's definitely a long term average, but even within those long term averages, there is variability and we mentioned that rates have been slowing since the late 1970s. In the late 1970s, the rate of long term average wetland loss was closer to a football field's worth of wetlands per 34 minutes.

Simone: Wow, 34.

Brady: So even faster than an hour. Yeah. So, and we've been slowing, and our most recent estimate in terms of long term average wetland loss rates is approximately a football field per one hundred minutes.

Simone: One hundred. Not literally.

Brady: Not literally. That doesn't mean that every 100 minute period that passes, one football field's worth of wetlands are lost, but it's just to put things into perspective so that people can sort of visualize the scope of the problem.

Simone: So, Brady, you do amazing work. Where can we find you online or where can we find the report and do you have a Twitter handle. Tell us, give us all the info.

Brady: Well, this latest report is available at pubs.er.usgs.gov/publications/sim3381.

Simone: All right, Brady. Thank you so much for being on with us. We loved having you and we hope to have on soon. Thank you for your great work. It informs what we do every day.

Brady: All right. Thank you.

Simone: Thanks, Brady.

Hold on just a second. We'll be back. You're listening to Delta Dispatches on 990 WGSO.


Simone: Welcome back to Delta Dispatches. This is Simone Maloz. I'm missing my partner in crime who's working away from Nola today. Boo. We're here every Thursday on 990 WGSO and online through our podcast. Check out and like the Restore The Mississippi River Delta and Restore or Retreat Facebook pages. We have our second guest on our mapping Louisiana's coasts theme episode. We are very lucky to have somebody that I like very much, Dr. Scott Hemmerling. Welcome to Delta Dispatches, Scott.

Scott: Hey, Simone. Great to be here.

Simone: How's your summer going?

Scott: It is going well. It's going by much too fast.

Simone: All right, Scott Hemmerling, PhD is the director of human dimensions for the Water Institute of the Gulf and focuses on research related to climate adaptation and community resilience. He has more than 10 years of experience investigating anthropogenic, wow, alterations to the landscape and the impacts of development on coastal communities. What does that mean, Scott? Tell us.

Scott: Well, we look at the impacts, so anthropogenic would be man made changes, so what changes are occurring in the landscape caused by human interaction in addition to the natural changes such as climate change things like that, but the built environment, the development of roads, levees, coastal restoration projects, things like that. So we really look at the impacts of all of these components on the communities. A lot of cases we see positive influences. A lot of cases we see negative influences. So it's really trying to dig down and just really look at how these changes affect communities. We've all seen the red maps and green maps of the coast, but we really try to put the people into those red and green areas and really explain what it means to live in these areas.

Simone: Yeah, I think this is not going to be strange news to you, but I love your work that you add the human science to, we just had Brady Couvillion on with USGS who was talking about his latest land loss report, but you really add that human dynamic to that. You work at the Water Institute and there's tons of great people over there that I love. We've had Dr. Denise Reed on to talk about deltas and diversions, Amy Wold, maybe one day we'll get your big boss to come on the show, Justin. We'll get him to come on one day, but really this is just as important of a science that human dimension. So, Scott, tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got even to this work, how you got to Louisiana. Give us some details.

Scott: Well, it's kind of a long and winding road that led me here.

Simone: That's how it always goes.

Scott: I actually grew up in Buffalo, New York and got my undergraduate degree back in 1992 from state university of New York at Buffalo. I studied environmental science and physical geography and then spent a few years as an emergency response worker doing Hazmat work, so I'd be the person getting the call at 2 in the morning to fly out to an oil spill in Philadelphia. I'd go don the Tyvek suit, put on the respirator, get out there, clean up, long hours, go back home, did that for a couple years and then long story short, got put on an outdoor water project in Buffalo, 12 hours a day in December, and I don't know how many of you …

Simone: No wonder you ended up in Louisiana.

Scott: I literally one day when I stepped down off of the 10,000 gallon tank of water I was standing on, went down to warm my hands up on the portable generator we had there, melted my gloves, had to go back in decon and change out all the, and I was like pretty much almost to the day, I said "That's it," gave my two weeks’ notice at work, made a New Year's resolution not to live one day in 1995 in Buffalo and New Year's Day drove down to New Orleans …

Simone: I wonder how many people's made that resolution?

Scott: And then when I was in New Orleans I worked at the Audubon Zoo for about four years, and at the same time I was working on my master's degree at UNO and then my wife and I moved to Baton Rouge and I got my PhD under Craig Holton at LSU in geography and anthropology.

Simone: Yeah, you used to work at USGS, too, though, right, Scott? Maybe this is our USGS theme show and not mapping Louisiana.

Scott: And actually I went to graduate school with Brady and worked with Brady at USGS.

Simone: Oh, cool. Cool.

Scott: Yeah, so when I was at LSU and I was working on my dissertation looking at environmental justice impacts to the oil industry in coastal Louisiana for MMS, after I turned in those reports and opening came with USGS so I went and worked for the National Wetlands Research Center and I was there for about seven years before the chance to actually really get into the human dimensions work really came open when Craig Holton came to the Water Institute and the opportunity to come to this brand new research institute and do the work that I was trained for, it really, gave up my permanent full time federal position and came to the Water Institute and it's been a whirlwind since then.

Simone: I'd say, right? You all had a big announcement this week. We'll talk about that in a little bit. I want to kind of jump around some. I want to talk about Louisiana's coastal atlas. I want to talk about your work there. You are a total rock star to me. You can buy the coastal atlas at Target. Scott, that's amazing that you have something that you can buy in Target, but it's so much more important than that. Tell us a little bit about Louisiana's coastal atlas, what it is and what it means really.

Scott: Okay, well the atlas, it started off as really a small project that we were working on here at the Water Institute where we wanted to identify a few variables that show coastal change across the coast, and as I started really digging into it and we wanted to look at things from a historical perspective so roughly around mid-century, 1950ish up to present, but we really, as I started delving in and started thinking about it from a resilience framework, what variables make up resilience, how can we really look at how resilience changes over the last 50 or 60 years, and realized that the story really could not be told in just a limited number of maps. There's so many variables that go into life in coastal Louisiana.

There's so many kind of push and pull factors, why people go towards the coast, why people move away from the coast, the impacts of whether it's storms or extreme rainfall events or drought or kind of the economic drivers, whether it's agriculture, industry, fisheries that really cause populations to shift and move around the coast, so it really, as we started gathering this data together, pretty quickly realized that this needs to be told in, we need a bigger venue to tell this because there's so much history, so many things that cause coastal change and it turned into the atlas. We worked with LSU press to get it published and went through a really long process to make sure that we would put out something that really from a scientific perspective would really hold its weight but also that someone whether college students, high school students, that people can take this and it's really something that you can look at and understand and begin to think about what life in coastal Louisiana means and the things that really, some of the risks we face, some of the ways that we're addressing it.

So, we can look at how things change in the past up until, things like the coastal Master Plan, really an innovation of we've gone from kind of a process where we have a lot of one off projects around the coast to this really integrated framework, but it's not just the coast Master Plan, it's really understanding that we do need this broad coastal framework, but there's things we can do on the local and community levels. Whether it's bios wales or rain gardens, these little local things that really improve the sense of place and can reduce some of the nuisance flooding, that's as much a part of coastal Louisiana as building a lot of the large projects and the levees so it really was just trying to tell this really complicated story and doing it visually, using the maps, letting the maps really tell you what's going on, and you can see it in the atlas the way we laid it out, it's kind of an introductory atlas and then, or an introductory kind of text portion to each chapter, and then just showing the maps and really letting the maps, letting the data tell the story.

Simone: Yeah, so more than 250 vibrant maps, really telling the history of adaptation through Louisiana. Scott, before we go to break, tell us where we can get that atlas. You have to have one besides just Target.

Scott: Well, it's on, I actually notice that it's on Amazon and strangely enough I've actually seen they have a few used copies on there, so …

Simone: Yeah, so it's on Amazon, I think LSU press. Yeah.

Scott: Yep. LSU press is probably, that's where I would definitely recommend going but if you head to LSU press to their website, and you can find the link to it and they'll have some samples of the maps and …

Simone: Yeah, got to check it out. Scott, will you hang on with us through the break and we'll get back to some of your current work at the Water Institute.

Scott: Certainly. That's be great.

Simone: Okay. Hold on just a second. We'll be back. You're listening to Delta Dispatches on 990 WGSO.


Welcome back to Delta Dispatches. I'm Simone Maloz. Today we're talking about Louisiana's coast, its people, its wildlife and why it matters. I am without Jacques Hebert today, but I am lucky enough to be joined by Dr. Scott Hemmerling. Welcome back.

Scott: Hey, Simone.

Simone: So, as director of human dimensions at the Water Institute of the Gulf some of your current work has you still doing some community mapping, right? You did some very interesting work in Delcambre and St. Bernard. Why don't you tell us a little bit about those projects?

Scott: Yeah, this was a project that we did for Louisiana Sea grants and it was a joint project between our coastal ecology section and the human dimensions section here at the Water Institute and really what we were trying to do with this was start thinking about how the environment and ecosystem based adaptation can be used to protect communities that are outside of the levees, so we started off with some, had some scientific workshop where we brought in about 40 scientists, about half natural scientists, half social scientists to really discuss all components of the ecosystem from kind of the ecological components but also the cultural and the social value of these ecological components.

And once we had these data we actually went out to the communities and we did some community mapping workshops in, as you mentioned, Delcambre and St. Bernard, and what we wanted to do there was really start getting the lived experience, the sense of place that people get from being in these communities. We wanted to find out what people value in the communities and what they see as sources of threat, so we did and we used a local knowledge mapping method where we pulled a group of about 15 people together for our first meeting and really just had people identify places that they value in their communities and we didn't put any restrictions on value because what is important to the people is what's important to them, so if it's the place where they've had their family reunion for the last 40 years and they feel that that is a place, mark it down, and one of our anthropologists who work with us here, she recorded some conversations with people and we have really strong qualitative data to really tie some of the things that people identified on the maps to the things people say about it and really trying to get an idea of that sense of place.

And at the same time, we wanted to identify sources of threats in the communities so for example, in Delcambre, a lot of people talked about when a south wind comes how much water comes out of the Delcambre canal and floods the communities. It doesn't even take a storm to do that and that might be a well-known fact to a lot of people in that area but when they started talking about it, and we wanted to include teachers in this group and you have a teacher say "You know what? A lot of the houses here are elevated, but when we have the south wind and it floods the streets, our kids can't get to school." So these are kind of the stories that really tell a different, it tells a different story in the way that …

Simone: Yeah, absolutely.

Scott: … life in the coast is like, and we did the same thing in St. Bernard out at the Aslanio Center down there and we took all of these data and turned it into really a, we were able to map it out and get a value surface and a threat surface based on community knowledge and really part of what we're trying to do here is really gather this important information that these communities have. Their local ecological knowledge, their community knowledge, their historical knowledge, and getting it into a framework where, folks at CPRA can use it and they can look and say "Okay, here's a place that communities value. How are we doing in protecting that? Is there more we can do to protect it?"

So, it really was a way to pull that and Sea Grants had a really …

Simone: Sure, yeah. Definitely.

Scott: … great history of doing that and we're really building off some of the work that they've done with some of the fishermen and really taking that work from the boats into the communities, so it's really a way to get this knowledge out there and put it, like I said, in a framework where you can use it where the folks doing the modeling or looking at coastal change or doing a lot of the really good engineering work that's going on in the coast, you can start, you have a dataset that you can look at and say "Here's what people value in the community."

Simone: Exactly.

Scott: How are we doing in protecting it? So I think that's really the important part of this and there's other components and other directions we can take it and like I said, when I mentioned if we have someone from the community who's lived there for 40 years, they can tell us important things about that community and places of value and just what is important. Why do people stay in coastal Louisiana?

Simone: Yeah, all important, all very important questions and answers that we need to document. I personally am looking forward to working with you on mapping even more communities and using Delcambre and St. Bernard as an example. So as we wrap it up, Scott, where can we find information maybe more about that community mapping work? Do you have a Twitter handle, Facebook, where can we find out more information from the Water Institute? Give us all the details.

Scott: If you go to www.thewaterinstitute.org you can go there, you can read all about the work we're doing. We have links to all of our reports, not just stuff that I'm doing but a lot of the other really great science that's going on here at the Institute. You can also kind of keep up with some of the work we're doing and as we go out and do more of the community type activities like this we'll be sure to keep that on there as well.

Simone: And Amy Wold made you get a Twitter handle?

Scott: Yes indeed. Amy …

Simone: You all are also on Twitter, right? I follow the Water Institute. They have some great information. Okay. So, very quickly, Scott, fun question. If you had to go anywhere on vacation this summer, where would you go? Delcambre?

Scott: You know, they actually do have a really great bed and breakfast that's also a crawfish farm in Delcambre that I've been dying to go to.

Simone: There you go. You can work for your overnight stay.

Scott: But I would absolutely love to get back to Northern California a little bit.

Simone: Nice.

Scott: Where I spent about three years of my childhood and I look back and now that my daughter's old enough to go out and appreciate these things, really get out there and see some of the national parks out west.

Simone: Awesome. Good answer. Good answer. You never know what people are going to come up with. Well, thank you so much for being on, Scott. We'd love to have you on again sometime and try to get your boss to come on one time. I keep telling Justin I'm going to have him on one day, but thank you so much for being on, Scott.

Scott: Thank you for having me.

Simone: All right. Thank you guys. We're going to wrap up this latest episode of Delta Dispatches. Just a reminder that the mid-Barataria public meetings are scheduled to take place from 5 to 8 pm on July 20th in Lafitte, July 25th in Belle Chasse at the auditorium and July 27th in Port Sulfur at their community center. The Mississippi River Delta group has some RSVPs on Facebook, has more information but then you could read more about the scoping meetings and what the EIS process is even about on the blog on the website. Your voice is needed. Attend upcoming mid-Barataria scoping meetings. You can also find more news on Restore or Retreat's Facebook page and on Twitter including information about our recent trip we took out to Whiskey Island. We had the opportunity to go out with parish officials from Terrebonne parish and the Terrebonne parish levee district to check out the CPRA's latest project on Whiskey Island. That project uses dollars set aside from the damages to natural resources that occurred during the 2010 oil spill.

So, thank you, Terrebonne parish for the invite and thank you to Terrebonne levee district for the ride out there. It's a great project. Check out the pictures and you can find the article on houmatoday.com. Also on our website, we have some information about a recent initiative announced earlier this week between Scott's organization, the Water Institute of the Gulf and Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority and a Dutch research institute called Deltares that's going to help collaborate. It's going to form a collaboration for projects that can protect and restore Louisiana's coast while applying solutions worldwide. The governor was at a press conference earlier this week. You can actually watch that press conference live and find more information about that collaboration on our website and as always, there's more helpful information on Mississippi River Delta's website as well and that is mississippiriverdelta.org and you can like I said, you can find out that blog post about the EIS meetings and tons of helpful information, so once again, you've been listening to Delta Dispatches on WGSO 990 am. Don't forget you can follow us on Twitter at @restoreretreat @smaloz @RestoreDelta and @jacqueshebert. Missing my friend. We'll talk to you again next week on Delta Dispatches.