Davis Pond needs more water

October 12, 2009 at 8:55 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

Davis Pond Freshwater Diversion Project presently is operating at half its capacity but it would benefit our coast if it were greater.

The structure at the Mississippi River in Luling reportedly is pumping some 5,000 cubic feet per second into the canal that leads into the wetlands of the Barataria Basin. That amount could be doubled up to 10,000 cubic feet per second and it would do us a lot more good.

The fresh water already diverted through it has noticeably made its mark in increasing the growth of vegetation in the basin and the number of fresh water fish in Lake Cataoutchie. An increase would have a more far-reaching effect.

We know there are oyster fishermen who oppose such an increase because they would have to move some oyster beds to areas south where the water is saltier. But the added vegetation along the upper rim of the coast would make the entire coast more secure from storm surges and an overall better habitat for fish.

As our wetlands wash away into the Gulf of Mexico, the coast as we know it will disappear. Then it will be too late to reclaim it and the oyster fishermen will lose a lot more in future oyster beds.

The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers is considering changes in operation of the diversion. At a hearing on its future operation in Waggaman Tuesday night, many people favored an increase in the diversion of fresh water from the river.

It could help save the most productive coast in the nation.

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