Louisiana’s $2-Billion Gamble- Flood The Land To Save The Coast, Green Tech—Pachama, Denmark First U.N. Member To Pay Into Climate Change ‘Loss And Damage’ Fund
Louisiana’s $2B Gamble- Flood the Land to Save the Coast, Pachama Green Tech, Denmark First U.N. Member to Pay into Climate Change ‘Loss & Damage’ Fund
LOUISIANA’S $2-BILLION GAMBLE: FLOOD THE LAND TO SAVE THE COAST
On average, between 1985 and 2010, Louisiana lost about a football field of coastline per hour, and the rate has not slowed. Stronger storms each year and sustained sea-level rise continue to eat away at its coast. Few have felt these effects more than the coastal communities. Hurricane Ida forced most of the remaining members the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw tribe to abandon their homes on Isle de Jean Charles.
The state is now proposing a $2-billion plan, called the Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion project MBSD. The primary purpose of the MBSD project is to reintroduce freshwater and sediment from the Mississippi River to the Basin to reestablish deltaic processes in order to build, sustain, and maintain land. The MBSD would be expected to build and nourish ten to thirty thousand acres of critical coastal wetlands over a 50 year period, being a top contributor to the 2012 Master Plan’s goal of achieving no net loss of land in the future. Secondary long-term goals include restoring and preserving critical coastal ecosystems.
Before the Army Corps of Engineers’ Mississippi River levee system was built, the river flowed unrestrained, often flooding large parts of Louisiana. But the floodwaters also brought in sediment important to preserving the integrity of the coastal marshlands. Once the river was restricted by the network of levees after the Great Flood of 1927, the wetlands lost much of their supply of sediment and began to erode.
Why does the Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion project matter to us? Louisiana’s coastal authority is using data from the center and other models to estimate how much land can be created over the next several decades. And if successful, this project will help us figure out how to let Nature lead while we humans get out of the way.
Pachama was founded in San Francisco in 2018 by Argentinians Diego Saez-Gil and Tomas Aftalion. It’s a technology company with the mission of restoring nature to solve climate change. By harnessing satellite data and machine learning. Pachama is scaling verification, monitoring, and exchange of nature-based carbon credits, helping enterprises achieve Net Zero targets.
What exactly does that mean? Pachama evaluates forest carbon projects globally to help its corporate customers identify the highest quality projects. It gathers satellite intel, LiDAR imaging, and other remote sensors to identify key forest characteristics to estimate each forest’s total carbon. Then it assesses a baseline.
The company also claims it uses dynamic machine learning to adapt for deforestation projects brought on by commodity price (timber) fluctuations or geopolitical instability (read “elections”). Finally, each project is carefully vetted by Pachama’s technology and forest scientists to make sure your investment reduces carbon, protects wildlife and supports local communities.
In May, 2022, Pachama received $55M in funding, including from some well-known celebrities eager to support the role of nature-based solutions in removing excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, including Serena Williams, Ellen DeGeneres and Portia DiRossi. Said DeGeneres and DiRossi in a statement, “We were inspired by Pachama’s innovative work to use satellites and remote sensing to measure the carbon stored in forests over time.”
Why does Pachama matter to us? “Scaling carbon markets will play a critical role in our collective ability to decarbonize. So companies like Pachama that can more accurately measure carbon sequestered by forests offsets to make more high-quality verified carbon offsets are crucial.
Pachama has evaluated over 150 forest carbon projects across 14 countries.
DENMARK BECOMES FIRST U.N. MEMBER TO PAY FOR ‘LOSS AND DAMAGE’ FROM CLIMATE CHANGE
Denmark has become the first U.N. member state to offer “loss and damage” support to developing nations that have experienced unavoidable social and financial impacts because of climate change. At last year’s COP26, Scotland became the first government contributor to a loss and damage fund, but as it’s a constituent country of the United Kingdom, Scotland is not a U.N. member state. Similarly, Belgium’s Wallonia region pledged another million euros to the cause.
But This is the first time in U.N. history a wealthy member state has pledged compensation for the consequences of emissions in the developing world. The country pledged 100 million Danish crowns—more than $13 million—that will go to the Sahel region in northwestern Africa and other impacted regions, per Reuters’ Valerie Volcovici.
The efforts are targeted at civil society and instruments to mitigate and insure against climate disasters. The new climate funds go to the Sahel and other fragile areas. They strengthen Denmark’s global efforts in the climate area and the objective that at least 60% of climate aid must go to climate adaptation. Development Minister Flemming Møller Mortensen says:
“I am very happy that we have agreed to increase support for climate-related losses and damages. I saw for myself in Bangladesh this spring that the consequences of climate change need increased focus. With this new agreement, we are putting action behind words and working across civil society, authorities, the private sector and experts to solve one of the biggest challenges of our time.”
And why does this matter to us? The development minister said it best, “It is grossly unfair that the world’s poorest should suffer the most from the consequences of climate change, to which they have contributed the least,”