The White House Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council has rendered approval to Governor John Bel Edwards’ request to include Louisiana’s Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion project on the Federal Permitting Dashboard.
The action follows an October 2016 memo to federal executive departments and agencies from White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) ordering agencies to make ecosystem restoration a priority, including timely review and permitting of Gulf Coast environmental restoration.
The White House memo further identified sediment diversions as the type of complex restoration project capable of delivering significant ecosystem benefits that warranted these extra coordination efforts.
“I am committed to an aggressive, comprehensive and coordinated strategy to address the urgent decline of Louisiana’s coast, an ongoing emergency which requires swift national attention,” said Edwards.
“The inclusion of the Mid-Barataria on the Federal Permitting Dashboard is a major victory and it means that we will be more efficient and effective in our mission to restore our coast for generations to come.”
The dashboard is just one tool within a larger strategy to facilitate enhanced interagency coordination for any infrastructure project of size, complexity and significance that might experience a lengthy federal environmental review and permitting process.