St. Charles Herald-Guide

Coastal restoration can help stop oil spills, too

By Allen Lottinger - November 11, 2011

There has been criticism of the building of berms along the Louisiana coast following the oil spill last year, claiming they failed to stop the oil flowing into the coast and are beginning to break up. The main purpose of the berms was to stop the oil but a secondary desire was to help stop the erosion that is destroying the coast.

Less than half of the 36 miles of berms that state officials wanted were actually built, which could be the reason why some of the oil reached shore. But the berms that are there should play a small part in helping save our coast.

There is a lot more sediment in the river that needs to be pumped into our wetlands and barrier islands before we can say our coast is stable. We should not have to wait for another oil spill for that to happen.

The state has been rather aggressive in trying to get it done but the federal government has not - and the feds control the money.

Many projects that would provide fresh water and sediment diversions into our wetlands and the restoration of barrier islands, which are the secrets to a stable coast, have been studied but few have become reality.

They would help provide a healthy coastline for Louisiana that could better stand the threat of hurricanes - and oil spills - in the future.

TV should give

more good news

Many television stations seem to concentrate on the bad news in the world. They should filter in more of the good stuff and, believe it or not, there is a lot of that going on.

The evening news on most stations report many more incidents that reflect evil-doing than good going on in the world. This is followed on CBS by Inside Edition that often makes the world look like a madhouse of wild humans. And other channels have similar programs that give one a false view of the world today.

Most newspapers seem to concentrate on the important things going on whether they are good or bad, though there are some that do otherwise.

The best way to cure this malady of public information is for the people to stop looking at TV programs or reading newspapers that report too much of the sensational news that is less important. If itís sensational but has more effect on the public at large, then okay.

The world has more people in it today and yet it is the same size as ever. As a result, there is much more around to air on TV or radio or write about in newspapers.

And responsible media should present their news items in proportion to the real importance they have on those people.

Take advantage

of early voting

Early voting for the upcoming Nov. 19 general election in St. Charles will run through Saturday. Those who expect to be out of the parish or have a heavy schedule that day should make use of it at the courthouse in Hahnville or annex in New Sarpy.

The turnout in St. Charles for the primary on Oct. 22 was somewhat disappointing. In fact, the two richest areas in the parish, Ormond and Willowdale, had the smallest turnouts.

There are not many people to choose from in this runoff and only one constitutional amendment on the ballot to test your brain power.

So if there is any possibility of your unavailability at the polls Saturday, do your duty this week.

You owe it to your parish and state.