Tulane Institute on Water Resources Law and Policy

 

NEWS RELEASE

LOUISIANA MUST ASSESS FINANCING OPTIONS FOR COASTAL PROTECTION AND RESTORATION:

The State has a scientifically valid plan for the coast, but lacks a cohesive strategy for funding the work.

 

For Immediate Release  

 

Contact:  Mark Davis

Tulane Institute on Water Resources Law and Policy

504-865-5982/504-919-8324 or at msdavis@tulane.edu

 

Dean Boyer

Tulane Institute on Water Resources Law and Policy

504-865-5980 or at nboyer1@tulane.edu

 

New Orleans, LA

January 18, 2017

As Louisiana finalizes the 2017 Coastal Master Plan, it still needs to identify sources of revenue to pay for the work over the next 50 years. According to Financing the Future III, a publication of The Tulane Institute on Water Resources Law and Policy released today, there are a number of options that could contribute funding to the Master Plan.

The Draft 2017 Coastal Master Plan carries a $50 billion price tag. Financing the Future I & II showed that the true cost would likely exceed $100 billion while the state can only count on roughly $21 billion in funds. Financing the Future III examines a myriad of financing options including increased federal spending for national security in the Gulf of Mexico, pipeline tariffs on oil and gas moving in the coastal zone, carbon markets, and revolving loan programs.

 

SUMMARY:

Louisiana faces an unprecedented challenge as it fights to preserve and restore its coast. In response, the State has devised a Coastal Master Plan based on world-class science and engineering expertise. The bold plan puts forth a list of projects and programs designed to have the greatest impact on the coast and the people who live there. Despite its scientific integrity, the Coastal Master Plan lacks a plan for paying for the necessary work. Successful implementation of the Coastal Master Plan will require at least $71 billion more than the State currently has identified. In addition, there are projects and costs not included in the Master Plan that are nonetheless essential to the region’s future. While the Federal Government will contribute to lessen this burden, the State cannot afford to wait or rely entirely on federal funds. Meeting the challenges of a changing coast will require financing solutions at the State, local government, and private levels. It is clear that Louisiana and its citizens will have to pursue aggressive measures to secure funds (or collect funds already owed) sooner rather than later. There is no single source of revenue that will pay for our future, but with contributions from stakeholders across the coast, state, and nation, we can turn the goals of the Coastal Master Plan into a reality.  

CONCLUSION:

Even as Louisiana works to secure federal funds for coastal protection and restoration, it cannot afford to wait on Washington. Fundamentally, it is Louisiana’s future and values at stake; the state cannot depend on the American people or the Federal government to invest if it has not done so first. Not all state-led funding options will be popular, but some will be necessary.
 

A copy of the report is available at the Tulane Institute of Water Resources Law and Policy Website here: http://media.wix.com/ugd/32079b_333bc8956d9d4d56ae8b76253c8270ef.pdf

Tulane University
Law School
Annex

6325 Freret Street

New Orleans, LA 70118