Dialogue in Advance of the Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act (CWPPRA) ‘Priority Project Lists’ Process
St. Bernard Parish — The Arlene and Joseph Meraux Charitable Foundation hosted a meeting on Jan. 10 to facilitate a dialogue on coastal restoration between landowners in St. Bernard, Plaquemines, Orleans, and St. Tammany parishes and representatives of more than ten coastal and environmental agencies.
“We hosted this meeting to provide an opportunity for agencies, landowners, and parishes to discuss priorities, find partners, and get on the same page before the CWPPRA PPL process ramps up,” said Bill Haines, a board member of the Meraux Foundation.
The Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act (CWPPRA) Priority Project Lists (PPL) is an annual process by which agencies, the public, parish governments, and other institutions can nominate coastal restoration projects. Information on the PPL process can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/coastalPPL.
The first presentation was given by Sarah Bradley of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on “what makes a strong CWPPRA project nomination.” The presentation slides can be found at merauxfoundation.org.
According to the website, lacoast.gov, CWPPRA “is federal legislation enacted in 1990 that is designed to identify, prepare, and fund construction of coastal wetlands restoration projects. Since its inception, 210 coastal restoration or protection projects have been authorized, benefiting approximately 100,000 acres in Louisiana.”
The meeting was facilitated by Amanda R. Moore, the Coastal Louisiana Organizer for the National Wildlife Federation. She works with the various stakeholder groups, including the Meraux Foundation, to address the alarming loss of coastal wetlands in Louisiana.
The meeting also included a review of recent project nominees and a review of each parish’s restoration priorities.
St. Bernard Parish government has developed a Coastal Master Plan to dovetail with the State’s Coastal Master Plan.
Today’s meeting was hosted at the Meraux Foundation’s Docville Farm campus. The environment is one the Foundation’s main program areas, and its activities in this area include coastal plantings, coalition building, and educational projects.
In November, the Foundation partnered with the Greater New Orleans Foundation and Restore the Mississippi River Delta to host ‘Community Conversations’ at Docville Farm where the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) updated area residents on the State’s master plan and received valuable input and feedback that will be used in developing the draft plan.
About the Arlene and Joseph Meraux Charitable Foundation
The Meraux Foundation is a private 501(c)(3) nonprofit
organization that was established by Arlene Meraux to benefit the community of St. Bernard Parish by leveraging its landholdings. Today, the Foundation’s board of directors is presided over by Arlene’s niece, Rita Gue, and consists of members Floyd Gue, Bill Haines, Chris Haines, and Sidney Torres, III. Guided by Arlene’s vision, the Board is implementing an innovative strategy to create lasting change and build a better St. Bernard.
In addition to the customary functions of foundations, the Meraux Foundation manages, maintains, and preserves extensive and diverse landholdings. Each type of land poses complex and often delicate challenges in its preservation, protection, and use, but the Foundation aims to maximize both short- and long-term benefits for the community and ecosystem.