Wetlands and barrier islands form a natural buffer zone that absorbs storm surges and blunts the force of high winds. Scientists estimate that approximately 2.7 miles of wetlands is capable of absorbing one foot of storm surge. As the barrier islands and wetlands erode, south Louisiana communities will be exposed to the direct brunt of storms and hurricanes.
If wetlands and barrier islands continue to erode as projected, more than 2 million people living in south Louisiana could be subjected to more frequent and severe flooding. The frequency of flooding along Louisiana's coastal zone has already caused some insurance companies to discontinue coverage and cease issuing policies. If we do not change our present course and rebuild this buffer zone, severe flooding will endanger all long-term investments in south Louisiana.