Conservation groups have expressed support for an agreement between Louisiana and federal officials to conduct an investigation focusing on the dynamic nature of the Lower Mississippi River and the interplay between restoration, navigation and flood control.

Louisiana’s Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) will collaborate on the analysis, officially called the Mississippi River Hydrodynamic and Delta Management Study.

“Today’s agreement between CPRA and the Corps is a significant step toward a fully integrated approach to river management based on the best available science,” said a joint statement by the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana, Environmental Defense Fund, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, Louisiana Wildlife Federation, National Audubon Society, National Wildlife Federation and The Nature Conservancy. “The Mississippi River is a dynamic and changing system. We have to understand those changes in order to implement effective solutions for restoration, flood control and navigation, which are all deeply interconnected.”

“Science tells us that the river is changing, and that the continued collapse of Louisiana’s wetlands will likely threaten our existing flood protection and navigation systems,” the groups continued. “This partnership between the CPRA and the Corps is necessary to meet the challenges associated with managing the Mississippi River for the multiple benefits it provides to the state and the nation.”