Behind that link you will find a story posted on the LA CoastPost Blog by Bill Nuttle, Ph.D., P.E.
I know this does not exactly fall within my “topic” but the Story of Lattara (Lattes) France is a shocking realization of a potential worst case scenario for coastal Louisiana. Please read the article written by Dr. Nuttle, but in a nutshell the Port city of Lattara was essentially buried by the action of the Rhone River around 1800 years ago. Essentially the Rhone blocked in the port by creating barrier islands and then the river and sediment filled in the lagoons until the city was buried. Obviously, there was no Army Corps of Engineers 1800 years ago. So, the possibility of our port cities being swallowed up is (maybe unfortunately) unlikely, but Dr. Nuttle does make a point that I feel is core to this class and the discussion as a whole.
Significantly increasing the rate of sediment accumulation along the Louisiana coast requires restricting the mouth of the Mississippi River, altering the balance of geomorphic processes and capturing most of the river sediment. Such change will inevitably result in the altered ecology of coastal wetlands and estuaries. The lesson from Lattara is that saving Louisiana’s coast means accepting the loss of its current configuration and familiar function.
I may not agree with the authors on the plausibility of a plan to “Save Louisiana,” but I definitely agree that we need to accept our dynamic history and understand that our future is no less dynamic.