Skip to comments.Katrina, Rita Actually Helped Wetlands, Study Says
Posted on 09/22/2006 7:03:27 PM PDT by blam
Katrina, Rita Actually Helped Wetlands, Study Says
for National Geographic News
September 21, 2006
A new study makes the provocative claim that Hurricanes Katrina and Rita actually helped stabilize coastal wetlands by depositing tons of silt and sedimenteven as the storms devastated dozens of square miles of the low-lying areas.
The new findings contradict long-held theories that rivers are the primary source of the sediment that forms wetlands, says research leader R. Eugene Turner, an ecologist at Louisiana State University (LSU) in Baton Rouge.
The study also counters beliefs that the loss of wetlandsespecially on the eastern Louisiana coastlinehas been caused by flood-prevention levees on the Mississippi River, he adds.
Coastal wetlands are breeding grounds for many marine animals. They also protect coastlines from hurricane sea swells, or storm surges.
Though sediments are a relatively small fraction of a wetland, such deposits are an important part of the physical framework supporting wetland plants.
In findings that could cause a stir among environmentalists, the LSU researchers ultimately conclude that hurricanes play an important role in maintaining the health of wetlands.
"I don't think most people expected that," said Mark Ford, deputy director of the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana (CRCL) in Baton Rouge. "It does sound a little counterintuitive.
"I expect it to stir up a lot of conversation. But that's good."
The study, which was funded by a $25,000 grant from the National Science Foundation, appears today in the online edition of the journal Science.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.nationalgeographic.com ...
In that case, it can't be "Bush's fault."
Not Bush's fault?
How about, THE EARTH WILL DO WHAT IT WANTS TO DO?
We really over-eraggeratte our importance. It's not "all about us."
Betty Dont... that name sounds suspicious!
Interesting. All part of a bigger plan and longer cycles that we really don't have a clue about, IMHO.
Who would have thought that Gods plan would have worked? Could there be other lessons from this 'wake up call?"
They turned New Orleans back into a wetland which it once was.
okay... the important question...
Will this mean lots of cheap shrimp when all of this shakes out? I mean... seriously...
Well, then what is causing the erosion? The erosion is happening, that's a provable fact that I've seen with my own eyes.
I think this study needs to be studied.
A hurricane hit Galveston a few years ago, while we owned a house on Galveston Bay, the land was former wetlands. The hurricane took 18 inches of soil out of our yard from behind our bulkhead. I don't know where that soil could have gone except out to the bottom of the bay. That doesn't seem like an action that would build up wetlands.