A new report released today by Dr. Loren C. Scott & Associates Inc. finds there would be significant regional economic benefits from building the Mid-Barataria and Mid-Breton sediment diversions in Plaquemines Parish.
The report, titled “The Economic Impact of Constructing the Mid-Barataria and Mid-Breton Sediment Diversion Projects,” showcases how local and state businesses, governments and residents will benefit economically during the combined seven-year period between 2021 and 2027 when these projects are being built.
The analysis indicates that the construction of these projects will total $1.85 billion over seven years.
In Plaquemines Parish specifically, business sales within the parish are expected to increase by $2.3 billion and $7.2 million will be added to the local treasury. Constructing these projects would support an annual average of 391 jobs a year with 687 created in 2023—the year of greatest expenditures. Over the seven-year period, parish residents will experience a $157.6 million increase in household earnings.
The benefits will extend to a broader region, including Plaquemines, St. Bernard, Orleans and Jefferson Parishes, according to the report. Regional business sales will increase by $3.1 billion and local government treasuries will receive an increase of $36.7 million. On average, 2,255 jobs will be supported during the seven-year period with a peak of 3,962 jobs in 2023.
The two sediment diversions are currently in the engineering and design phases and will be located on either side of the Mississippi River in Plaquemines Parish. Once built, the coastal restoration projects will be operated strategically to deliver sediment, freshwater and nutrients from the Mississippi River to build and maintain tens of thousands of adjacent wetlands over time.‘
The study comes as sediment diversions have come under increasing scrutiny by coastal communities. Earlier this month, two Mississippi Gulf Coast governments issued statements opposing the Mid Breton project, specifically, because of concerns over its impact on fisheries. Read the full report from Loren Scott.