State of Louisiana Advances Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion
CPRA Issues EIS Public Notice for crucial restoration project
(New Orleans, LA – October 12, 2016) Today, the Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) announced that it is preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Mid-Barataria sediment diversion. With this move, CPRA advances this key restoration project through the federally-mandated National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process, which will provide opportunities for the public and stakeholders to learn more about the project and provide feedback into how the project will be constructed. It will also result in a written report that outlines potential impacts and mitigation options.
Responding to this long-awaited and critical step forward, members of Restore the Mississippi River Delta – Environmental Defense Fund, the National Wildlife Federation, National Audubon Society, Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana and Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation – released the following statement:
“This step forward indicates CPRA’s recognition of the urgency of our land loss crisis and the state’s commitment to addressing it. We are pleased to see action toward the state’s goal of breaking ground on this project by 2020, and we urge the state and federal and local partners to do everything possible to meet this goal.
“Sediment diversions, which mimic the natural processes that built the land we live on in the first place, have been part of our state’s restoration planning arsenal for decades. We are nearing the day when sediment diversions, which will build and sustain land for decades to come, become a reality not only for today but for future generations.
“This important EIS process will help inform how to best construct the Mid-Barataria sediment diversion – before it’s too late. The process will empower the public and other stakeholders, by giving them the opportunity to provide feedback on operations and other details of the project and ensure relevant questions are answered.
“Given future challenges of sea level rise and continued land loss, the state must advance the most powerful restoration projects to match the severity of our crisis. Sediment diversions are a cornerstone of our state’s restoration plan that seeks to secure a sustainable future for coastal Louisiana’s people, industries, wildlife and abundant natural resources.”
Elizabeth Van Cleve, Environmental Defense Fund, 202.553.2543, firstname.lastname@example.org
Emily Guidry Schatzel, National Wildlife Federation, 225.253.9781, email@example.com
Jacques Hebert, National Audubon Society, 504.264.6849, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jimmy Frederick, Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana, 225.317.2046, email@example.com
John Lopez, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, 504.421.7348, firstname.lastname@example.org
Restore the Mississippi River Delta is working to protect people, wildlife and jobs by reconnecting the river with its wetlands. As our region faces the crisis of threatening land loss, we offer science-based solutions through a comprehensive approach to restoration. Composed of conservation, policy, science and outreach experts from Environmental Defense Fund, National Audubon Society, the National Wildlife Federation, Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana and Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, we are located in New Orleans and Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Washington, D.C.; and around the United States. Learn more at www.mississippiriverdelta.org.