The Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group (LA TIG), the entity responsible for the oversight, planning, and implementation of Deepwater Horizon oil spill Natural Resource Damage Assessment settlement funds in Louisiana, has approved $204.7 million for a variety of projects aimed at helping the state continue its recovery from the 2010 oil spill.
These projects, approved in two recent restoration plans, will assist in the development of Louisiana oyster beds, increase oyster production, improve the response effort for stranded dolphins and whales, and create approximately 1,200 acres of marsh in the upper Barataria Basin.
“This funding advances the largest marsh creation project that the LA TIG has approved to-date and distributes almost the entirety of Louisiana’s oyster settlement allocation, two major feats in our effort to restore coastal Louisiana following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill,” said Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards. “I would like to thank the Louisiana Deepwater Horizon Trustees for advancing these critical projects for our state.”
“These projects will enable us to fulfill the priorities Gov. John Bel Edwards stated earlier this year at the start of his second term,” added Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) Chairman Chip Kline. “The governor wants state agencies to partner with each other to achieve sustainability for our economy and environment, and specifically called for new initiatives to help the oyster industry. CPRA and our sister state agencies are putting those words into action.”
The LA TIG also approved $176 million for the Large-Scale Barataria Marsh Creation: Upper Barataria Component, a project that will use 10.5 million cubic yards of sediment dredged from the Mississippi River to build 1,200 acres of marsh in Jefferson Parish below the Jean Lafitte area known as The Pen.
This project continues the process of using restoration funding to restore wetlands, coastal, and nearshore habitats in the Barataria Basin, where the greatest oiling impacts from the Deepwater Horizon spill occurred, and expands land building westward along a permitted long-distance sediment pipeline corridor previously used to build over 1,900 acres of marsh through projects funded by CPRA and its federal CWPPRA funding partners.