ZTCC’S COASTAL RESTORATION & ENVIRONMENTAL PROJECT
Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana severe Coastal Erosion problem started 50 years before Hurricane Katrina, and Rita. Plaquemines Parish and Louisiana coast land is being lost at the rate of 25 sq. miles a year which represents more than 80% of all coastal saltwater in continual march loss. During the past 50 years, we have lost more than 1,000 sq. miles of land. Because of this advocacy, community and faith base organizations must be involve in the Coastal Restoration movement. If we do not demand Congressional funding for our Wetland and Coastal Restoration we can lose 700 sq. miles in the next 50 years. Preliminary estimation from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) indicate that 75, 520 acres (118 sq. miles) of marsh land along Louisiana coast was shredded or sank as a result of Hurricane Katrina, Rita, Gustav, and Ike. These storms have proven that our levee system is not the lone solution to hurricane protection. Proper funding from the Federal Government would help Plaquemines Parish develop multi-lines defenses to prevent wind surges. Using sediments from the Mississippi River to rebuild brackish marshes and raise a cypress-tree line ridge in front of our 100 miles of levees and to fortify barrier Islands. Part of Plaquemines Parish wetland and coastal Restoration can be contributed to the Petroleum companies offshore drilling. Over 750 miles of Oil and Gas Pipelines traverse Plaquemines Parish. In addiction over 1, 100 active Oil and Gas Structures are located off of the Plaquemines coast and served from facilities within the parish. Using Oxfam America Funding and other funders ZTCC Coastal Restoration Project & Environmental Project objectives were able to:
1. Held monthly Community Meeting with Parish President and Coastal Restoration staff and state agencies and community to discuss Plaquemines Parish Coastal Restoration Plan.
2. ZTCC brought our coastal restoration and environment pollution to Congress. Our Congressional advocacy and travel to Washington D.C. was because of our funding and networking with Equity & Inclusion, Unitarian Universalist Service Center, Oxfam America, National Urban League, Congressional Black Caucus, Louisiana Oyster Association, Louisiana Justice Institute, Advocate for Environmental and Human Rights, and many more. ZTCC testify before Congressional Committee, met with Congressional staff, Senators and Representatives.
3. We held meeting with the U.S. Corp of Engineers, FEMA, Louisiana governor, and local elective officials to get local, state, and federal dollars to rebuild our wetlands prevents further Coastal Restoration, to improve levees to protect Plaquemines Parish residents from future category 5 Hurricane surges/winds and to end environmental pollution. We were able to get the Parish government to develop multiple lines of Coastal Restoration and Hurricane Defenses and to destroying our environmental. (See enclosed pamphlet).
4. ZTCC network with Plaquemines Coastal Restoration Office and Advocate for Environmental and Human Rights to facilitate Community Training Session on Coastal Restoration and environmental pollution.