Louisiana Breaks Ground on Single-largest Ecosystem Restoration Project in U.S. History

The Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion will protect people and birds from storms and erosion. 
A Bald Eagle flies just above the surface of the water with its wings and talons outstretched.
Bald Eagle. Photo: Jeff Smith/Audubon Photography Awards

(August 10, 2023) — Today, state and federal officials in Louisiana broke ground on the Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion, a large-scale restoration project that will reconnect the Mississippi River with its wetlands. Cut off from the river by levees for a century, Louisiana’s Barataria Basin has experienced some of the highest rates of land loss on the planet.

The Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion will deliver much-needed sediment to restore the wetlands in Barataria Basin, strengthening tens of thousands of acres of wetlands, which will buffer nearby communities from storms and provide habitat for iconic birds like Roseate Spoonbills and Bald Eagles.

To mark the occasion, Dr. Elizabeth Gray, CEO of the National Audubon Society, issued the following statement: 

“Today we celebrate 15 years of advocacy, science, and public engagement as we reconnect the river with its historic wetlands — This is a big win for people and birds on Louisiana’s coast,” said Gray. “With increasingly damaging storms, we need our wetlands more than ever to soak up huge quantities of water, ease flooding, and protect our communities, birds, and wildlife.”


About Audubon 

The National Audubon Society protects birds and the places they need today and tomorrow. Audubon works throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education, and on-the-ground conservation. State programs, nature centers, chapters, and partners give Audubon an unparalleled wingspan that reaches millions of people each year to inform, inspire, and unite diverse communities in conservation action. A nonprofit conservation organization since 1905, Audubon believes in a world in which people and wildlife thrive. Learn more at www.audubon.org and on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @audubonsociety.