The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) has approved five projects totaling more than $245 million for funding from its Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund (GEBF) to the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) of Louisiana.
The projects, developed in consultation with CPRA and federal resource agencies, are designed to advance critical river diversion projects within Louisiana’s Comprehensive Masterplan for a Sustainable Coast.
New projects include the engineering and design of two major sediment diversions along the Lower Mississippi River that, once constructed, will build, sustain and maintain thousands of acres of vulnerable coastal wetlands in Louisiana.
Construction on these major coastal restoration projects is estimated to begin as early as 2021.
Additionally, Louisiana will advance engineering and design on a freshwater diversion of the Atchafalaya River to protect marshes in the upper part of Terrebonne Parish Louisiana. The state also will continue its effort to adaptively manage these critical coastal restoration projects.
“This award gives Louisiana a significant push forward in the implementation of both our barrier island restoration program and our sediment diversion program, in addition to building out a critical and robust adaptive management program for each,” said CPRA Chairman Johnny Bradberry.
“Just this month, with our last award from NFWF, we were able to complete pumping over 5 million cubic yards of sediment, our biggest restoration project to date, for 22 miles of Caminada headland beach and dune restoration,” added Bradberry. “This latest award allows us to advance even larger projects, the Mississippi River Mid-Barataria and Mid-Breton Sediment diversions, as well as diverting freshwater flows from the Atchafalaya River into areas of Terrebonne parish starved of freshwater.”
The will be the fourth year of approved funding, with NFWF approving nearly $465 million for projects in Louisiana.