Coastal Restoration In Louisiana Essay

2296 words - 9 pages

Geologically speaking, Louisiana is a very young state. Environmentally speaking, Louisiana is a very fragile state. Louisiana has always been dependent upon the nutrient rich deposits from the Mississippi River to build up the land. Centuries ago the Mississippi River periodically changed its course, building up Louisiana one delta at a time. The erosional forces of the Gulf of Mexico and annual hurricanes depleted Louisiana’s coastline, but the mighty Mississippi River would replenish the land losses. Such is the relationship that forces of nature have with one another. Place mankind in the mix, and the relationship becomes stressed and dysfunctional. The present day Louisiana coastline is a mere shadow of its former self. Let’s look at how Louisiana came to its current demise and what is being done to rectify the situation.
Historical Data
As sea level rose and fell over Louisiana in previous centuries, the Mississippi River carried large loads of sediment to the Gulf Coastal area from the core of the North American continent and deposited it on the rim of the Gulf of Mexico. Prior to the twentieth century, 5 million acres of land were compliments of the large influxes of mud from the river’s mammoth basin, extending from Montana to New York State. Organic matter from highly productive marine waters has been deeply buried under the whole state and far offshore, turning into petroleum. During other dry periods, large beds of salt were laid down through evaporation. Human engineering has temporarily tamed the river, most of the time, preventing it from dumping its valuable land building sediment all over the place. As a result, coastal Louisiana is sinking out of sight, starved of fresh material.
The Mississippi Delta was
In 1718, French settlers founded New Orleans on a natural ridge of high land on a bend of the Mississippi River. Flooding of the settlement was problematic. By 1812, the settlers had built miles of levees on the banks of the river. For the next two hundred years, the surrounding wetlands were drained to eliminate swamps filled with yellow fever carrying mosquitoes and to encourage economic development. Draining water from peaty soils encouraged subsidence. The land which was just inches above sea level to begin with steadily sank. In combat of this, higher and stronger levees were built, tightening the straight jacket already placed upon the Mississippi River. The massive flooding of 1928 brought further flood control systems implemented by the Army Corps of Engineers with Congressional blessing. By the 1950’s, dramatic rates of land loss in Louisiana’s coastal zone stretched across 300 miles from Texas to Mississippi and inland 50 miles. (Tibbetts)
Giving full credit to restricting the Mississippi River as the culprit for loss of wetlands is not accurate. The booming oil and gas exploration of the 1970’s and 1980’s merits a name on the marquee as well. The pipelines and canals used to transport the resources to the...

Find Another Essay On Coastal Restoration in Louisiana

Hurrincanes Essay

857 words - 3 pages coastal communities. Along the coast, the greatest threat to life and property is storm surgefrom a hurricane. Research has shown that significant deaths have been brought on from the increase of the ocean related to the major hurricanes that have made landfall. Hurricanes affects storm surges which generally are the basis of coastal flooding. In 1953, the United States weather service began giving names to hurricanes to better track

Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico

1006 words - 4 pages Katrina and Rita. Following the 2005 hurricane season, New Orleans and coastal Louisiana are estimated to have lost over half of its public health and healthcare infrastructure, including employees. The health care sector, including public health, have yet to fully rebound to their pre-Katrina status. , As a result, one recent report found “Katrina kids” to be among the sickest in the nation. Sadly, the situation is likely to further decline

Corporate Social Responsibility of BP in Gulf Oil Spill

2026 words - 8 pages spills, but also wan more time for the rescue. The fifth step, static sealing method to seal the well. In August 5th, the work of pouring cement from top of the well was successful completed. At last, the well was completely blocked. (100 Days of the BP Spill, 2010) At the same time with the implementation of oil well plugging, USA government and the BP carried out the clean-up work of the sea and coastal. The focus of the sea cleaning was to

The Mississippi River System.

563 words - 2 pages Waterway system extends from New Orleans westward to the Mexican border, connecting the Mississippi River through Algiers and Harvey Locks with the important coastal harbors of Morgan City and Lake Charles, Louisiana, and Beaumont, Port Arthur, Galveston, Houston, Freeport, Corpus Christi, and Brownsville, Texas. Eastward from New Orleans through the Industrial Lock, the 12-foot depth of the Intracoastal Waterway extends 400 miles to Apalachee Bay

Contamination- Insight into the Effects of Poor Beach Cleanup

1507 words - 6 pages accordance with recommendation from the Department of Environmental Quality (Great Lakes Protection and Restoration). These guidelines not only allow people to maintain their own shoreline, but promote the people living there to take action. Instead of saying that the people can’t maintain the shoreline, the state allows them to maintain it in a healthy and limited approach. This not only allows natural occurrences, but it also prevents drastic

Madison And Jefferson's Federalist Ideas

944 words - 4 pages the press and speech; concentration of agriculture in the South; minimal navy for coastal defense, which was achieved by Jefferson; and were primarily pro-French. These ideals were addressed during the Jefferson and Madison presidencies. However, in times of great crisis, the two presidents seemed to abandon their Democratic-Republican beliefs and lean towards a strong central government. The Louisiana Purchase was an event in which recognized

How Oil Drilling Works

1610 words - 6 pages more than 700 oil refineries worldwide. Polluting gases pumped out of these refineries are a major environmental concern (Mooney 7). These refineries found mainly in Texas, Alaska, California, Louisiana, and North Dakota (20). Also, transporting large amounts of crude oil across the ocean poses great risks to marine life and coastal communities along the route as seen in the 1989 Exxon Valdez tanker crash that spilled almost eleven million gallons

Stream Restoration

2183 words - 9 pages Different physical structures may be used in stream restoration in order to provide channel stability and in order to provide habitat and other beneficial functions. Some of the typical structures that are used are revetments made of gabions or riprap and woody debris. Each type of structure has benefits and costs that should be considered before installation and some are more appropriate in certain situations than others. Gabion revetments

Deals with the clash between the French and British (English) in the 1750s over the land in the Ohio Valley.

651 words - 3 pages with the trading deals made with the natives. In doing this, they became very wealthy and the greed for money increased. Looking for more trapping, they moved deeper into the American and Canadian forests nearly wiping out the beaver population. As they ventured into the Ohio Valley, they began to meet English settlers who were traveling west to avoid the filth and crowds of coastal settlements.In 1749, several prominent English and Virginian

Sanibel, Florida (Do Enjoy, Don’t Destory)

631 words - 3 pages The City of Sanibel is a 12 mile long island (12,000 acres) with ecosystems ranges from coastal beaches, dunes, upland ridges to freshwater wetland to mangrove swamps off the in the Gulf of Mexico (Duerksen & Snyder, 2005). This small community cherishes its cultural, social, ecological, and economic diversity. Their permanent population of 6,000 residents choose to live in harmony with nature; creating a human settlement distinguished by its


901 words - 4 pages Wetlands "Wetlands" is the collective term for marshes, swamps, bogs, and similar areas. Wetlands are found in flat vegetated areas, in depressions on the landscape, and between water and dry land along the edges of streams, rivers, lakes, and coastlines. Wetland areas can be found in nearly every county and climatic zone in the United States. Inland wetlands receive water from precipitation, ground water and/or surface water. Coastal and

Similar Essays

Wetland Restoration Essay

1170 words - 5 pages long term success of a restoration project (Kusler, pp. 5-12). In coastal Louisiana, backfilling canals is used as a technique for wetland restoration. Thousands of canals have been dredged in Louisiana wetlands for oil and gas exploration since 1938. These canals have a number of harmful effects on the wetland environment including alterations in salinity, flooding and drainage patterns, direct loss of marsh by conversion to open water, and

Marine And Coastal Ecosystems Degradation Essay

1414 words - 6 pages impact assessments should be adopted to evaluate the impact of some projects on coastal lands before they are undertaking. This is because a restoration cost of some damages may be more costly than if damage had been prevented. For instance it was estimated that a 500,000 abandoned mines in the U.S. will cost $20 billion in management and remediation of pollution (Septoff, 2006). Overfishing can be reduced through an enforcement of fishing

Hurricane Katrina: Causes, Effects, And Aftermath

1779 words - 8 pages arrived at the Louisiana and Mississippi border again on early August 29th (Zimmermann 1). Seven states were affected by Katrina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana. Ohio and Kentucky were affected due to floods in the Mississippi river. The most damage happened in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama. Hurricane Katrina hit many places in the United States, but some were impacted more than others. One of the first places hit by

Impact Of The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill On Usa’s Environment And Economy

1906 words - 8 pages early September. We know there are significant impacts to marsh and coastal wetland habitats along sections of the Louisiana coast, particularly near Grand Isle, Louisiana. We are continuing to monitor what the full impact will be to migratory birds and other wildlife” (Testimony of Jane Lyder) The prospective damage to sea turtles and marine mammals is harder to quantify, because the Deepwater Horizon oil spill is exceptional in magnitude