Gov. Bobby Jindal has declared a state of emergency for Plaquemines Parish as it deals with encroaching salt water that's threatening drinking water in the New Orleans area.
Wednesday's declaration clears the way for state agencies to offer help to the parish as it deals with its water supply issues. The Mississippi River was closed temporarily to shipping traffic as contractors began building an underwater barrier that the Army Corps of Engineers says will stop the advance of salt water.
Due to the river's low water levels, salt water has been moving far upriver and was at the outskirts of New Orleans by Wednesday, nearly 90 miles north of the mouth of the Mississippi.