Texas updates coastal resiliency master plan

The state General Land Office has updated its master plan for coastal resiliency, which includes 17 projects in Jefferson and Orange counties, part of the effort to protect and promote “a vibrant and resilient Texas Coast.”

“The Texas coast is an integrated network of built infrastructure and natural environments that should be considered in partnership to understand and achieve coastal resiliency,” Commissioner George P. Bush wrote in an introduction to the new document. “The state’s natural coastal environments contribute resources and invaluable ecosystem services — such as cultural and recreational benefits, seafood, flood prevention and habitat productivity — that bolster business development, improve quality of life, and attract people to Texas. The coast’s built environments provide the support services, transportation and infrastructure systems that allow communities, businesses and families to grow and flourish up and down the coast.”

Bush said the state’s coast serves as home to 6.7 million people — that’s a quarter of the state population — and may grow to 10 million in 30 years.

By planning now, Bush said, there is opportunity to foster “smart and resilient development.”

Big-ticket items in the plan for Jefferson and Orange counties, according to the document, include:

• Orange County Hurricane Flood Protection Levee, $2.364 billion

• Port Arthur Hurricane Flood Protection Levee, $881.9 million

• McFaddin National Wildlife Refuge Shoreline Restoration, $183.1 million

• Sabine Pass Jetty Repair, $105 million

• Texas Point Beach Nourishment Project, $36.1 million

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