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New Orleans, LA, United States

Nyman J.A.,Louisiana State University | Baltz D.M.,Louisiana State University | Kaller M.D.,Louisiana State University | Leberg P.L.,University of Louisiana at Lafayette | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Coastal Research | Year: 2013

Louisiana's 2012 Master Plan for a sustainable coast was designed to minimize economic damage from storm surges and to maximize wetland habitat for fish and wildlife. Selecting projects for inclusion in the master plan depended partly on models that simulated the effects of management options on environmental factors that control habitat quality for fish and wildlife. We used 13 models to predict the effects of the master plan on habitat quality for fish and wildlife in coastal Louisiana. Habitat quality was predicted to change more for the Neotropical songbirds and seven other modeled species losing habitat quality with the status quo (-37%) than it was predicted to increase for five modeled species gaining habitat quality with the status quo (+18%). The master plan was predicted to slow or negate all changes associated with the status quo. All of the modeled fish and wildlife belong to people of the state of Louisiana, people living in countries bordering the Gulf of Mexico, and to people throughout the Americas. Thus, declining fish and wildlife habitat quality in Louisiana probably will cause market and nonmarket losses, which although concentrated in Louisiana, will extend across the Americas. As funding for Louisiana's master plan is pursued, it is important to consider that almost all of the causes for net wetland losses in Louisiana are external to the owners of these wetlands but that the fish and wildlife that use these wetlands belong to and benefit people throughout the Americas. © 2013 Coastal Education & Research Foundation. Source

Peyronnin N.,Coastal Protection and Restoration | Green M.,Coastal Protection and Restoration | Richards C.P.,Coastal Protection and Restoration | Owens A.,Water Institute of the Gulf | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Coastal Research | Year: 2013

Louisiana is in the midst of a land loss crisis that has claimed more than 4800 km2 since the 1930s. Unless aggressive, large-scale action is taken, Louisiana could lose an additional 4500 km2 in the next 50 years, resulting in a projected increase in annual damages from hurricane storm surge flooding of more than23 billion. Louisiana's 2012 Coastal Master Plan is a long-term plan with clear economic, social, and environmental benefits, such as decreasing potential damages from storm surge by5.3 billion to18 billion. Implementation of projects in the master plan should result in no net loss of land after 20 years and an annual net gain of land after 30 years. To develop the plan, the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) utilized a state-of-the-art systems approach to coastal planning and a science-based decision-making process that resulted in a funding- and resource-constrained plan that makes the greatest progress toward achieving a sustainable coast. A series of integrated, coastwide predictive models were developed to provide data for a new planning tool used to identify the suite of projects that would make the greatest progress toward meeting the master plan objectives while considering uncertainties in future environmental conditions. Recognizing that the success of the plan hinges on stakeholder support, as well as science, the CPRA also implemented a comprehensive outreach plan to obtain input and feedback from key stakeholders and the public. The resulting plan recommends a specific list of restoration and protection projects and has achieved widespread support. © 2013 Coastal Education & Research Foundation. Source

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