Rabbit Island Restoration Project
This project proposes to utilize dredged sediment from the Calcasieu Ship Channel or other suitable source to restore the elevation of the island on its current footprint of approximately 200 acres. The restored island’s increased elevation will increase the abundance and quality of nesting habitat for a number of colonial nesting waterbirds including brown pelicans, wading birds, terns, and other colonial nesting water birds.
This project is consistent with the Replenish and Protect Living Coastal and Marine Resources programmatic goal, Birds restoration type, and adaptive management criteria in the PDARP/PEIS. In addition, it would meet the evaluation criteria established by OPA because:
- the project likely benefits more than one resource (restore and enhance nesting habitat for multiple bird species);
- the project would prevent future injury to the area by elevating the island and reinforcing the surrounding protective rock dike to restore bird habitat injured by the DWH oil spill;
- collateral injury will be avoided by addressing the potential for collateral impacts in project design and employing best management practices in project implementation;
- there is a high likelihood of success because this project is technically feasible and utilizes proven and established restoration methods used by other projects in the region;
- cost estimates are based on similar past projects, and similar projects have been constructed at a reasonable cost; and
- there would be no effect on public health and safety.
This project is consistent with the Coastal Master Plan. The nexus between the injury and programmatic restoration goal is clear.