State officials announced that the Elmer’s Island wildlife and public beach refuge would be reopened Monday thanks to the fact that a large part of the coast has been restored.
According to Charlie Melancon, Secretary of the state Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Elmer’s Island is more beautiful than ever. The restoration project has paid off, as it will represent the ideal environment for wildlife and a great recreational site for residents and tourists thanks to the added coastal protection.
This restoration project has started in 2012 and received a $200 million funding. The entire beach and shoreline have been restored by professionals who dredged sand taken from Ship Shoal, situated around a 30-mile distance from the Gulf.
Then, the sand was loaded into barges to be pumped with the help of pipeline. Using this method, the engineers were able to restore over 800 acres of beach and eroded shoreline. This project runs from Belle Pass and continues to Lafourche and Caminada Pass.
Using this initiative, officials want to protect Port Fourchon, which is the hub for local communities and Gulf oilfield. Also, many species of animal will see their habitat restored soon.
Since 2012, around 300 acres of wetlands as well as 6 miles of dunes and beach have been restored in the western part of Caminada headlands. On the eastern part of the Elmer’s Island, the restoration project started in 2013.
Until now, around 500 acres of wetlands as well as 7 miles of dunes and beach have been restored. According to chair Johnny Bradberry, this is the largest restoration project in the history of CPRA.
The agency will continue to work on restoring wildlife habitat, dunes, and coastal beaches, while it also aims to provide a solid and reliable barricade to tackle storm flooding and surge whenever the bad weather is closing in.
All residents are excited about this project, as they are looking forward to seeing the results with their own eyes. Such initiative is a great example of what people can do for the environment once they set a clear goal.
Apart from the Elmer’s Island refuge, there are many other affected areas across the United States which need support and funding.
Image Source: Wikipedia