Regional Events

What We Do to Protect the Mississippi River Delta

Brown pelican stretching his wings

The islands, estuaries, and wetlands of the Mississippi River Delta provide habitat to migratory birds, economically-important finfish and shellfish and endangered or threatened animals such as the Louisiana black bear. The coastal zone is also home to nearly 2 million people and critical industries that help feed and power the nation.

Unfortunately, the Mississippi River Delta is experiencing the highest rate of land loss in the United States.

Outlying communities are being submerged and wildlife habitat is shrinking. Stronger hurricanes and rising seas threaten family-supporting jobs and the integrity of coastal ecosystems.

The good news is that the river delta can be renewed and sustained if we restore the land-building power of the Mississippi River in a controlled way within the next 10 years.

Our Work to Restore the Mississippi River Delta

National Wildlife Federation is partnering with Environmental Defense Fund and National Audubon Society for the RESTORE the Mississippi River Delta campaign to move projects in the Mississippi River Delta from plan to action.

Our overall objective is to ensure that river delta is safe and sustainable for people and wildlife. To do this, NWF and its partners are working to:

  • Expedite the design and implementation of large-scale initiatives that restore the Mississippi River’s natural capacity to build land.

  • Ensure the safety of communities and businesses in the river delta by advocating for hurricane protection that includes coastal restoration and non-structural measures.

  • Create sustained national and state funding and political will to move restoration from plan to action.

Connect with This Campaign:

RELATED: Follow our work on the 2010 Gulf Oil Spill Crisis

Reports & Factsheets

Achieving Resilience in Coastal Communities

More widespread adoption of nonstructural risk reduction measures will become increasingly important to coastal Louisiana in the context of flood insurance, rising sea levels, stronger storms, and continuing land loss. The study’s results highlight the need for improved information about what current risks are for coastal Louisiana and how to reduce them.

Answering 10 Fundamental Questions about the Mississippi River Delta

A scientific and economic case for restoring the Mississippi River Delta wetlands, which have shrunk in size by nearly 1,900 square miles since the 1930s.

Pulsed Land-Building Sediment Diversions

Effective “pulsed” sediment diversions are a key tool for building land and sustaining our delta.

Wetlands & Barrier Islands

The wider the wetland buffer, the higher level of protection.

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