What it's about:
Negotiations are underway to resettle a Native American community in coastal Louisiana, after the tribe lost nearly all its land partly due to rising seas, a first in the United States, reports Houma Today.
The band of Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw, who live on the Isle de Jean Charles – a Louisiana coastal wetland - have seen some 98 percent of their land disappear since the 1950s.
The area has suffered massive land loss since 1955 and is expected to act as a model for other communities that may need to relocate in response to increasing coastal hazards, the local newspaper said.
There are only about 320 acres left of Isle de Jean Charles, which officials estimate was more than 22,000 acres 60 years ago. Experts estimate the island will be completely submerged within 50 years, it added.
Negotiations are underway between the state and a landowner for a sugar-cane farm that could serve as the relocation site.
The area has been pummelled by a number of hurricanes from Lili in 2002 to Ivan in 2004, Katrina in 2005 and Gustav in 2008.
Why it's noteworthy:
In 2016, Louisiana won a $92.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development through the National Disaster Resilience Competition that aimed to invest $1 billion in communities struck by federally declared major disasters since 2011.
Louisiana was one of 13 states and municipalities to receive grants, with $48.3 million being allocated to the resettlement and the remaining money going to resilience initiatives in six coastal parishes, Houma Today reports.
Louisiana’s coast has been sinking at a fast pace compared to most U.S. coastal areas, a phenomenon officials attribute to sea level rise and shoreline erosion.
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