Coastal Desk

Southeast Louisiana is sinking under the waves faster than any coastal landscape in the world. With so much at stake for Louisiana and the nation, WWNO has made coastal news a priority.

Since mid-2014 our Coastal Desk reporting team has been producing frequent news reports and in-depth features covering coastal erosion and restoration; hurricane protection; offshore energy and other coastal businesses; wildlife and fisheries impacts; and coastal communities and culture.

Support for the Coastal Desk comes from the Walton Family Foundation, the Greater New Orleans Foundation, and local listeners.

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Travis Lux / WWNO

Floods this summer revealed that New Orleans’ drainage system hasn’t been working at full capacity. Since then, the city has been scrambling to improve the system in a number of ways — from repairing drainage pumps to clearing catch basins on the street.

 

This weekend, the city will teach citizens how to clean catch basins themselves. They’re calling it Adopt-A-Catch Basin.

 

Catch basins are those grated gutters on the sides of the road. When it rains, water flows through those grates before it’s pumped out of the city.

Molly Peterson / WWNO

Around the country, hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent to buy back individual homes from people who have flooded repeatedly. But buying out a whole neighborhood is uncommon. Louisiana's 2016 flood seems to be changing that for two communities. In Pointe Coupee and Ascension Parishes, a buyout program first used in neighborhoods after Superstorm Sandy may offer a new option to homeowners who have lived with escalating risk for decades.

Travis Lux / WWNO

WWNO’s Travis Lux sat down with Nola.com/The Times-Picayune’s Sara Sneath to talk about the week in coastal news.

 

This week — boil advisories, stuff washed ashore by hurricanes, and a new report on how shrimpers might adjust to coastal restoration.

 

Coastal News Roundup: The Latest On The Tiny Bug Eating The Marsh

Sep 15, 2017
Travis Lux / WWNO

An invasive insect plaguing the coast has killed thousands of acres of tall marsh grass that bind our fragile wetlands together. Coastal researchers worry that the threat could increase the rate of coastal erosion and destroy fish habitat. Fishermen are worried.

Travis Lux / WWNO

For decades, oil and gas companies dug canals through Louisiana's marshes looking for oil and building pipelines.

Those canals are one of the big causes of coastal land loss. Now a handful of parishes are suing the oil and gas companies over that damage.

It seems like filling the canals back in with soil would be a good way to fix the damage, but that's not part of the state's new Coastal Master Plan.

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

With much of the Texas coast devastated by tropical storm Harvey, Louisiana continues to send help. Lake Charles has become a staging ground for relief efforts.

With search and rescue efforts completed in the flooded parts of southwest Louisiana, Gov. John Bel Edwards says the state has now taken the lead on evacuating and sheltering people from the far corner of southeastern Texas.

Rear Admiral Paul Thomas is Coast Guard commander for the Gulf.
Jess Clark / WWNO

New Orleans dodged any major damage from Hurricane Harvey. Here, the last few days, the weather has been sunny and clear with big fresh gusts of wind — pretty much as good as it gets this time of year.

But on the 13th floor of the federal building on Poydras street, it might as well be ground zero in Houston. There, a small team of Coast Guard members is working 24-7 to support search and rescue efforts hundreds of miles away.  


National Hurricane Center

Tropical Storm Harvey made landfall in Southwest Louisiana early Thursday morning and is expected to move diagonally across the state over the next 24 hours as it weakens. Even though the storm is strong enough to damage trees and power lines, Gov. John Bel Edwards says the threat of flooding has decreased.

weather.gov

Tropical Storm Harvey has made landfall another time, this time on the Louisiana coast, near Cameron Parish. The state is bracing for up to 10 inches of rain and strong winds.

The National Weather Service is warning of torrential rain and potential tornados.

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