CPRA to spend over $1 billion on dredging projects this season

The Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority Board (CPRA) has voted unanimously to approve the 2023 Coastal Master Plan and the Fiscal Year 2024 Annual Plan.

Photo courtesy of CPRA

The Coastal Master Plan is a living document that is required by statute to be updated every six years. The plan incorporates the best available scientific and engineering data and community input to prioritize projects for implementation to further CPRA’s mission to protect and restore Louisiana’s coast.

The 2023 Coastal Master Plan is the fourth iteration and builds on the capabilities and advancements of previous plans.

“The 2023 Coastal Master Plan is the most expansive this agency has produced, giving us an unprecedented opportunity to improve the lives of south Louisianans who are looking to the state for answers to some of the most dire issues facing Louisiana,” said CPRA Chairman Chip Kline. “Implementing the projects in the plan over a 50-year period could reduce risk from tropical storms and hurricanes to coastal communities to less than what the current risk level is today.”

The Annual Plan details projected revenues and expenditures and forecasts projects that will be undertaken by the state and its partners for the upcoming three years. It gives an overview of the progress that Louisiana’s coastal program has made toward implementing previous Coastal Master Plans.

The FY24 Annual Plan projects revenues of $1.62 billion, which will be used to fund 147 projects and create nearly 9,000 jobs in the coastal sector. The plan outlines 21 dredging projects, which will utilize 77.3 million cubic yards of sediment to nourish over 14,500 acres of land across coastal Louisiana in the coming year.

“This year’s Annual Plan outlines the largest annual investment CPRA has ever made in our coast,” said CPRA Executive Director Bren Haase. “An estimated $1.3 billion will go directly to building some of the largest, strongest, and most innovative projects in the history of our coastal program during this fiscal year. That’s 93% of our revenues dedicated to getting projects on the ground, restoring our ecosystem, and protecting vulnerable communities along our coast.”

Following the Board’s approval yesterday, the 2023 Coastal Master Plan and the FY 2024 Annual Plan will be submitted to the legislature for adoption during the 2023 regular session.