Louisiana snags $155.7 million in GOMESA money

Source: U.S. Department of the Interior

Louisiana on Monday snagged $155.7 million in GOMESA revenue-sharing funds for coastal restoration efforts, derived from offshore energy production.

Plaquemines Parish gets the largest disbursement in the state, with more than $3 million. Rounding out the top five: Jefferson Parish, nearly $2.6 million; Terrebonne Parish, nearly $2.4 million; Orleans Parish, more than $2.1 million; and Cameron Parish, just under $2.1 million. In the Capital Region, Livingston Parish gets close to $1.3 million.

All told, U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary David Bernhardt announced that the Department disbursed almost $353 million in FY 2019 energy revenues to the four Gulf oil and gas producing states—Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas, and their coastal political subdivisions, or CPS—an increase of 64.2% over the prior year.

The funds will be used to support coastal conservation and restoration projects; hurricane protection programs; and activities to implement marine, coastal or conservation management plans.

Examples of Louisiana projects previously funded with GOMESA dollars:

• $50 million for a permanent gate structure that will prevent flooding to portions of six parishes on Bayou Chene. Once complete, the project will feature a 40-foot barge gate to provide protection against storm surge up to 10 feet, along with a series of flood-walls and levees to support additional protection.

• In Ascension Parish, GOMESA will fund $65 million for a project that includes a pump station to be constructed on the Mississippi River at Donaldsonville with a minimum pumping capacity of 1,000 cubic feet per second alongside the existing 500 cfs station, tripling the capacity for fresh water entering Bayou Lafourche to combat saltwater intrusion and provide fresh drinking water to over 300,000 residents in Assumption, Ascension, Lafourche and Terrebonne Parishes.