As outlined in the Coastal Master Plan, CPRA believes our state needs a holistic approach to coastal restoration and protection. In fact, since 2008, CPRA has dredged nearly 30 million cubic yards from Mississippi River borrow sites. This work has created, restored, and nourished nearly 4,000 acres of marsh, barrier island, and ridge habitat utilizing riverine sediment. Additionally, over the next 15 years, CPRA plans to dredge as much as 55-65 million cubic yards.
While dredging provides critically needed short-term benefits, it doesn’t address the root cause or solve our fundamental issue of implementing projects that provide a sustainable and continuous source of new sediment. However, our latest research shows that when implemented together, marsh creation and sediment diversion projects perform better together and for a longer period than they do as individual projects.
Sediment diversions will complement these restoration projects. The latest estimates show that, on average, the sediment diversion will deliver between 2-3 million cubic yards of sediment a year.
This land growth will provide sustainability for nearby communities and reduce storm risk. Additionally, these projects will also boost the local economy because contractors will need to hire workers and have teams working in the community for several years.