NEW ORLEANS (press release) – As Louisiana reaches the peak of its annual storm season, Common Ground Relief Wetlands invites businesses, community leaders, and individuals to take a simple step towards improving Louisiana’s ability to fight back: Join the Plant a Million Trees Campaign to restore Louisiana’s Gulf Coast wetlands.
Louisiana’s wetlands are vanishing. Every hour, a wetlands area the size of a football field vanishes into the Gulf of Mexico. Every year, an average of 10,000 acres of land vanishes into open waters. This coastal land loss is one of themost serious environmental crises today.
The Plant a Million Trees campaign aims to raise awareness and support for continued restoration of state wetlands. Planting of native trees armors levees, reduce the effects of wind and storm surge, and provides vital wetlands habitat.
Plant a Million Trees invites donations that will enable Common Ground Relief Wetlands to grow native tree saplings in its tree nursery and help establish additional community nurseries throughout Louisiana. The donations will go towards growing native seedlings into mature 3 to 5 foot saplings, planting the saplings throughout Southeast Louisiana, and monitoring their growth.
These donations will also enable Common Ground Relief Wetlands to engage students and volunteers from around the world in this project. Schools can also help with fundraisers and volunteer opportunities at the Lower 9thWard Native Tree Nursery.
Common Ground Relief Wetlands is also working with property owners in Theriot, LA to construct ponds to grow Bald Cypress trees. The eRotary Coastal Club has provided funds to underwrite the community engagement activities as trees are planted.
Louisiana lost 1.2 million acres (2,000 square miles) of coastal land from 1932 to 2010. It is estimated that 350 million trees were lost in the Gulf Coast between 2005 and today. In the next five decades the Louisiana coast is expected to lose another 1,800 square miles. This not only threatens people and wildlife, but the economy in New Orleans, the State of Louisiana, and across the country.
Within Louisiana, coastal wetlands help reduce flooding and erosion, provide essential habitat for wildlife, and support significant economic and recreational functions. Throughout the country, they sustain commercial fishing, protect important shipping ports, and support the nation’s energy supplies.
WHEN: Thursday, Sept. 12, 10 a.m.
WHERE: Common Ground Relief Wetlands
1800 Deslonde Street
New Orleans, Louisiana 70117