Louisiana’s Moon Shot is the latest coastal feature by Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Bob Marshall, of The Lens. The interactive article, a collaboration with ProPublica, focuses on details of the state’s coastal Master Plan.
The Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, the state agency charged with implementing and maintaining Louisiana’s Coastal Master Plan, is applying for funding for five major restoration projects. The projects include creation of marshes adjacent to the Lower Ninth Ward, New Orleans East, Lake Maurepas and Biloxi, and money for consolidated management of the Mississippi River.
A coalition of national environmental groups says the billions of dollars expected from the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill penalties should go toward rapidly rebuilding Louisiana’s coastline.
During a teleconference Tuesday, the conservation groups outlined 19 priority projects detailed in their two new reports. David Muth, Gulf Program director for the National Wildlife Federation, says these projects are critical.
Louisiana coastal restoration officials are suing a federal agency over the cost of fixing damage blamed on a now-closed south Louisiana waterway.
The federal court lawsuit was filed Tuesday in New Orleans by the Coastal Restoration and Protection Authority. It notes that the man-made Mississippi River Gulf Outlet is widely blamed for contributing to flooding during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. It says federal law ordering the closure of the channel also requires the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to restore wetlands damaged by years of poor maintenance of the waterway.
The Interior Department Inspector General says two federal agencies lack of oversight when dealing with coastal restoration grants in Louisiana.
An audit of the Coastal Impact Assistance Program outlines concerns about contract awards and other financial matters.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the state Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority are in charge of that coastal impact program. They say the audit didn't cite serious problems, but did point out areas for improvement.
The US Treasury Department announced yesterday that Gulf Coast state and local governments can finally submit proposals and apply for RESTORE Act funds. This opens up grants to support communities impacted by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Some of the $653 million in civil penalties that came out of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill are now available. 35 percent of that money will be divided equally among the five states of Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. 20 coastal parishes in Louisiana qualify for the funds.
A state judge in Baton Rouge has ruled that Louisiana's Legislature missed its mark when it passed a bill seeking to halt a south Louisiana flood board's lawsuit against dozens of oil, gas and pipeline companies over coastal damage.
The legislation prohibits state agencies and local governments from pursuing such suits. But state District Judge Janice Clark on Monday said the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East is neither a state agency nor a local government.